Photo by Melody

Trees, Shrubs and Conifers: Little Gem Magnolias having only leaves on outer branches.

Communities > Forums > Trees, Shrubs and Conifers
Forum: Trees, Shrubs and ConifersReplies: 3, Views: 39
Add to Bookmarks
Evansville, IN

October 5, 2012
11:19 AM

Post #9296666

I have 5 little gem magnolias that were approximately 10 feet high when they were planted two years ago Each year, they get a little more barren inside the branches. The tips of the branches are leafy and full, but one can see the bare branches and the trunk of the trees because after shedding their leaves, they aren't growing any inner branches or leaves. Is there any solution? I live in Indiana, and we had a terrible draught this summer. I saw to it they had plenty of water. I fertilized last fall and this spring with Hollytone following the directions on the package.
This summer the trees bloomed beautifully and put on new leaves on the tips but none in the center of the trees. Now some of the leaves are yellowing and falling. I'm concerned that the trees will look skeletons before long.
Dublin, CA
(Zone 9a)

October 5, 2012
11:54 AM

Post #9296691

Can you post some pictures?


Beautiful, BC
(Zone 9b)

October 5, 2012
8:46 PM

Post #9297116

I'd say they went through a drought and lost the inside leaves in the past. You can tip prune them and get them to bush out a bit. If I were you, I'd build little soil moats around the drip-line of the trees so that when you water, the water goes into the root zone properly. You may have purchased them as root-bound and the water wasn't getting into the centre of the roots.


Scott County, KY
(Zone 5b)

October 6, 2012
8:30 PM

Post #9297968

I'd offer that mtvernon34 go visit the local zoo. You have a horticultural bonanza there at the Mesker Park Zoo, and a chief horticulturist that knows no bounds. Observe how the Southern Magnolia specimens there are grown, and imitate that performance.

You should know that broadleaf evergreens keep their leaves only for a set amount of time, and each species drops an older year's worth of leaves EACH YEAR. Those would be interior leaves. Southern Magnolias (as a rule) do not regrow leaves on old wood (interior to the tree). You would have to shear the plants (like the production nursery would have, to produce unnaturally dense plants) to force dormant bud break on older branches. You probably would not like what that looks like.

You need to see what older mature Little Gem Southern Magnolia trees look like, and then you'll have an idea of what to expect yours to grow into.

You cannot post until you register, login and subscribe.

Other Trees, Shrubs and Conifers Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Sambucus nigra 'Black Beauty' evelyn_inthegar 59 Apr 10, 2010 5:27 PM
Mulberry ellenann 8 Mar 29, 2008 2:04 PM
Styrax japonica 'Pink Chimes' rcn48 10 Jun 10, 2008 9:58 AM
Which Trees don't root? Kim_M 37 Aug 26, 2009 6:21 PM
Transplanting sassafrass seedling Rikkashay 14 Jul 13, 2009 12:25 PM

Overwhelmed? There's a lot to see here. Try starting at our homepage.

[ Home | About | Advertise | Media Kit | Mission | Featured Companies | Terms of Use | Tour | Rules | Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Contact Us ]

Back to the top

Copyright © 2000-2015 Dave's Garden, an Internet Brands company. All Rights Reserved.

Hope for America