Monday, May 16, 2011

Streetside Magnolia

Magnolia is a large genus of about 210 flowering plant species in the subfamily Magnolioideae of the family Magnoliaceae. It is named after French botanist Pierre Magnol. Magnolia is an ancient genus. Having evolved before bees appeared, the flowers developed to encourage pollination by beetles. As a result, the carpels of Magnolia flowers are tough, to avoid damage by eating and crawling beetles. Here is tree growing outside in the street in a South Miami neighborhood that flowers every year.


you-wee because said...

Hi Lan,

I just came across your blog and strolled / browsed through. I found your photo about the blossom you classfy a magnolia blossom. As far as I can see it seems to be a ficus elastica (rubber fig or rubber plant) you caught.
I'm no specialist in plants, but I took a very similiar white blossm several years ago at Milano, Italy. Especially the glossy leaves make me believe it's a rubber plant.,r:23,s:0&biw=1600&bih=725

Regards from Germany,


Lan said...

Hi, I am afraid that you may be mistaken. The flower I showed is from a magnolia tree, which is quite rare to find in South Miami. We have a large number of Ficus elastica and I have never seen flowers from this species in Miami. The leaves from the two plants are quite different. The Ficus has much larger leaves and they are always much "smoother" than the leaves of the magnolia, that are usually smaller. The Ficus' leaves here can grow to be huge, to be a foot or more in size. The magnolia leaves are about 6 by 2 inch in size and they ondulate gently. Their leaves have two colors, green on top and rust color on the underside. These leaves resemble very much those of the "breast milk" fruit tree (Chrysophyllum Cainito.) Search for breast milk in my blog to find this tree. The photo of the flower in your URL reference seems to be that of a magnolia tree also. If you look at the leaves there, you can see that they are ondulated on the edges. The Ficus leaves are never like that. They are always rigidly "flat."

Thank you for your comment. With Regards,