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Magnolia fraseri (Mountain magnolia)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Magnolia fraseri

Magnolia fraseri Walter

Mountain Magnolia, Fraser Magnolia

Magnoliaceae (Magnolia Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

A tree often branched near the base, with an open crown of spreading branches, large leaves, and very large flowers.

Named for John Fraser (1750-1811), Scottish botanist, who introduced many North American plants to Europe. This species, of scattered distribution, is fairly common in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Planted as an ornamental for the large flowers and coarse foliage.


From the Image Gallery

5 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Tree
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Oblong , Obovate
Leaf Venation: Pinnate
Leaf Margin: Entire
Leaf Base: Auriculate
Leaf Texture: Smooth
Breeding System: Flowers Bisexual
Fruit Type: Aggregate , Follicle
Size Notes: Tree up to 50-100 feet tall; trunk diameter up to 2 feet; crown widely spreading.
Leaf: Alternate but crowded at the tip of the branches so as to appear whorled, simple, deciduous, oblong to obovate, pointed or rounded at the tip, auriculate at the base, without teeth, smooth, up to 20 inches long, up to 8 inches wide; leaf stalks smooth, up to 5 inches long.
Flower: Solitary, up to 10 inches across, fragrant; flower stalks stout, up to 1 1/2 inches long, glaucous.
Fruit: Many follicles crowded together into a cone, rose red, up to 4 inches long, smooth; seeds fleshy, up to 1/3 inch long.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May


USA: AL , GA , KY , NC , NY , OH , SC , TN , VA , WV
Native Distribution: W. Virginia and West Virginia south to n. Georgia; at 800-5000' (244-1524 m).
Native Habitat: Moist soils of mountain valleys in hardwood forests.

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low


Conspicuous Flowers: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE


Bibref 1620 - Gardening with Native Plants of the South (Reprint Edition) (2009) Wasowski, S. with A. Wasowski

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 17 - Southern Wetland Flora: Field Office Guide to Plant Species (0) U.S. Department of Agriculture. No date. Southern wetland flora: Field office guide to plant species. U.S.D.A. Soil Conservation Service, South Nat...

Additional resources

USDA: Find Magnolia fraseri in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Magnolia fraseri in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Magnolia fraseri


Record Modified: 2023-04-13
Research By: TWC Staff

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