Yellow Bird Magnolia

Botanical Name: Magnolia x brooklynensis ‘Yellow Bird’

Alternate Name: Magnolia ‘Yellow Bird’

The Yellow Bird Magnolia (Magnolia x brooklynensis ‘Yellow Bird’) is considered to be one of the best cultivars for yellow flowers. It puts on a beautiful display of bright yellow flowers in spring as the leaves are emerging. ‘Yellow Bird’ is a fast growing, medium-sized, deciduous shade tree. It has a pyramidal or conical growth habit with upright branching and grows to a height of 30-40 feet with a spread of 10-25 feet.

Yellow Bird Magnolia was developed at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. It is a cross between Magnolia acuminata, a native to the eastern US, and Magnolia liliiflora, a native to Japan and China. It can live up to 80 years.

The upright, yellow flowers of the Yellow Bird Magnolia blossom in late spring. They are large and goblet-shaped, measuring 3 inches in diameter. Each flower contains 6 tepals. They are slightly iridescent, and the flowers are radiant when backlit by sunshine. The tree will bloom for approximately 3 weeks.

The leaves are elliptical and dark to mid-green in color, growing up to 10 inches in length. The fall color is brown and yellow.

The Yellow Bird Magnolia is not particularly susceptible to any significant diseases or pests. It tolerates a range of soil conditions. ‘Yellow Bird’ should be planted in a sheltered location but not on the south side of a building where it may open its buds too early and suffer frost damage.

Height: 20-40 ft.

Width: 10-25 ft.

Shape: Pyramidal, Oval, Conical

Flower Color: Yellow

Flowering Time: April

Fall Color: Yellow-Brown

Features: Showy fragrant flowers

Exposure: Full Sun to Part Shade

Watering: Moderate & Regular

Soil: Prefers acidic, rich, moist, well-drained soils. Tolerates clay as well as neutral and alkaline soils.

Growth Rate: Moderate

USDA Zones: 4-8

Uses: Accent tree, shade tree, lawn tree

Similar Trees: Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera), Columnar Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera 'Fastigiata'), Elizabeth Magnolia (Magnolia x 'Elizabeth'), Galaxy Magnolia (Magnolia x 'Galaxy'), Daybreak Magnolia (Magnolia 'Daybreak'), Moonglow Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana 'Jim Wilson')

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