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Do Magnolia Trees Need Pruning? And Other Common Magnolia Care Questions

The first time you prune a tree it can feel a little bit scary. You just spend so much time and care to grow your tree and now you’re just going to cut it down? It seems counterintuitive, but pruning your trees can actually lead to fuller, more uniform growth. And pruning isn’t just for rose bushes and topiaries, many trees, including the magnolia can benefit from being pruned.

When we first started growing trees, pruning was also something that scared us. We didn’t want to cut too much or too little and we certainly didn’t want to hurt the tree. But 20 years of growing later and we’ve discovered how to turn any gangly magnolia tree into a beautiful specimen.

The first thing you want to do when pruning your magnolia tree is to get a sharp pair of clippers and start cutting off the exterior branches. You can cut it right at the bud, as seen in the video above. Now, the energy that wasn’t being used to grow outwards will be used to help the magnolia tree grow upwards towards the beautiful, blue sky. The magnolia trees love to be pruned and doing so helps combat disease and allow full branches to bloom next year.

Do magnolia trees bloom twice?

Generally, magnolia trees only bloom once per year. Because of the wide variety of magnolia trees you might see magnolias blooming anywhere from March to August. Southern Magnolias bloom in May or June and will have a few blooms that blossom throughout the summer months. If a magnolia tree were to bloom twice, like the Chinese Magnolia sometimes does, it would bloom in early spring and then again in late summer.

Do magnolia trees lose their leaves?

Most magnolia trees are evergreens, which means they don’t lose their leaves every winter. Instead, in the springtime some leaves will turn yellow and drop. Magnolias still lose their leaves, but they won’t experience one big leaf drop like deciduous trees do. So don’t be alarmed if your magnolia tree starts dropping some leaves, it’s perfectly normal!

Do magnolias need full sun?

Magnolias require six or more hours of full sun per day! These trees love the sunshine, which is why they thrive on our family farm here in Florida. Magnolias will thrive with a little bit of light shade as well, but it’s definitely something to consider when you’re planting your magnolia tree.

Are magnolias slow growing?

Magnolias are considered to have a slow-to-medium growing rate since it grows about one to two feet per year. Really dry periods or extra-wet seasons might slow the growth of your magnolia tree along with any winter burn or leaf scorching. At the end of the day, a happy, healthy tree will grow faster than one that gets less care.

We hope we answered some of your most frequently asked questions about magnolia care and that you now know if your magnolia tree needs pruning or not. If you ever have any questions about tree care you can contact us here.

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