Need an Inspiration?

Sometimes we’re all in need of inspiration, and this spring, ours came from its namesake, Magnolia ‘Inspiration’. This stunning evergreen hybrid between Magnolia doltsopa and Magnolia laevifolia was developed by our old hosta friend, Barry Sligh of New Zealand, who sadly passed away in 2019. Our amazing seven-year old specimen is now 10′ tall x 10′ wide and as you can see if absolutely loaded with deliciously fragrant flowers. Pat McCracken of Garden Treasures Nursery tells me that he produced it for a while, but stopped because it grew too fast in containers. I agree with his assessment that it is the proverbial ugly duckling when young, but it sure makes a heckuva swan when it ages.

Magnolia ‘Inspiration’
Magnolia ‘Inspiration’

4 thoughts on “Need an Inspiration?”

  1. A lovely sight! But disappointing when I try to locate the tree – at whatever size (though, for me, bigger would be preferred) – only to find that it’s unavailable in the US.

    1. Most plants worth having require a bit of searching. We keep a desiderata list and perform an Internet search every few months to see if they have become available. Another option is to ask your local garden center to source the plant for you.

      1. I haven’t tried the local approach — though I don’t give it much hope in this instance — though I have tried the Internet search several times after initially seeing it at the JC Raulston Arboretum. The description “grows too fast” really struck a responsive cord as I’m getting old and that seemed just about perfect considering my remaining lifespan.

    2. Jere, If you are still looking for an Inspiration tree try Woodlander’s Nursery which ships via mail order. They posted an email today (1-10-2024) that it is available. regards, Marina

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