Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’

1 Apr

Magnolia x soulangiana 'Rustica Rubra' (16/03/2014, Kew Gardens, London)

Magnolia x soulangiana ‘Rustica Rubra’ (16/03/2014, Kew Gardens, London)

Position: Full sun to partial shade

Soil: Moist but well drained

Flowering period: Spring

Eventual Height: 6m

Eventual Spread: 6m

Hardiness: 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b

Family: Magnoliaceae

Magnolia soulangiana unopened flower (19/03/2011, Kennington, London)

Magnolia soulangiana unopened flower (19/03/2011, Kennington, London)

Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ is a deciduous large  shrub or small tree with a spreading habit. Its dark green leaves are alternate and simple. Its flowers are goblet shaped, purple/ red with white insides to their petals and up to 20cm across. The flowers open just before the leaves appear.

Occasionally spelt  Magnolia × soulangianaMagnolia × soulangeana was first grown by French botanist Étienne Soulange-Bodin (1774–1846), by crossing Magnolia denudata with Magnolia liliiflora. It is commonly known as the Saucer Magnolia.

Magnolia soulangiana flower (30/03/2011, Walworth, London)

Magnolia soulangiana flower (30/03/2011, Walworth, London)

The etymological root of the binomial name Magnolia was named after Pierre Magnol, a 17th century French botanist. × soulangeana was; named for Étienne Soulange-Bodin, a 19th century French cavalry officer and Director of the Royal Institute of Horticulture who originally created the cross. ‘Rustica Rubra’ is derived from the Latin meaning ‘a red country girl’.

The landscape architect may find Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’  useful as a beautiful, spring flowering specimen tree with an open  habit. To be fully appreciated it needs grass or low planting to its base.

Magnolia x soulangeana 'Rustica Rubra' Leaf (15/08/2015, Kew gardens, London)

Magnolia x soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ Leaf (15/08/2015, Kew gardens, London)

Ecologically, Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’  is very specific in the types of wildlife it caters for as the Magnolia genus evolved before flying insects such as bees and as such does not produce true nectar or even true sepals or petals. It secretes a sugary substance to attract beetles and its pollen is an excellent source of protein for them.

Magnolia x soulangeana 'Rustica Rubra' Bark (15/08/2015, Kew gardens, London)

Magnolia x soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ Bark (15/08/2015, Kew gardens, London)

The Royal Horticultural Society has given Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ their prestigious Award of Garden Merit in 1993.

Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ prefers moist, humus rich, well-drained soils. It prefers an acid to neutral pH of soil.

Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’ requires little care, dead wood should be removed after flowering.

Davis Landscape Architecture


One Response to “Magnolia × soulangeana ‘Rustica Rubra’”


  1. Magnolia, diversitate in culori | Gradina Vesela - 10/02/2014

    […] Sursa foto aici […]

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