Mystery Tree


christine
contributor

Mystery Tree

12 Apr '07 8:13 am
How great that there is a place for plant identification! I have a tree in my neighborhood that I would love to know more about. I asked one of the fellas who does gardening in the area and he said it must be a type of Magnolia. But now that it is flowering, the flowers look nothing like other Magnolia varieties I can find listed online...

In the first photo, it is the muti trunk tree in the center:

Image

Image

Image

Image

The wood from this tree is a creamy white with a tinge of orange - very smooth and nice for carving...

Thanks for any help!

Christine
Last edited by christine on 13 Apr '07 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

Mystery Tree

13 Apr '07 1:59 am
Your tree does look very much like a magnolia from it's trunk and leaves. There are so many magnolia varieties (magnolias are actually prehistoric trees). For some reason I want to suggest that you search for Sweet Bay Magnolia. This could be totally wrong, but that's what popped into my mind.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

christine
contributor

13 Apr '07 11:54 am
Hi Faith,

I found a page that lists many varieties here:

http://www.conifer.com.au/magnolia_list

None of them mention tiny flowers aranged like grapes on multiple stems.

I agree though, the leaves and trunk says Magnolia to me. Even the wood is somewhat similar.

I'll keep looking :)

Christine

Jack Holloway
Passionate Gardener
User avatar
SEQUOIA FARM Haenertsburg South Africa

Viburnum perhaps!

14 Apr '07 6:56 pm
Hi Christine, and welcome to the forum!

The flowers are definitely not magnolia – in fact, two thoughts came to mind. It might well be ‘tropical’, in which case heaven help us in trying to identify it, there are so many options! (What are yor minimum temperatures? That might well rule this possibility out.)

The second thought was ‘those are viburnum flowers’. So I go to my tree bible, Hugh Johnson’s Encyclopaedia of Trees. Tree-like viburnums I suggest you google are: V. lantana and V. lentago. Perhaps there are others. The other possibility is Sorbus – there are a few that don’t have compound leaves, but I think that is a false trail.

Can you describe the fruit? Are the flowers scented? Always enjoy a good mystery!

moosey
head gardener
User avatar

Viburnum flowers?

15 Apr '07 1:44 pm
Jack, me too! Honestly! I'm not likely to ever have met this particular tree. I looked at the photo and thought of Viburnums, but I chickened out of posting a reply. Great minds think alike, hee hee.
Head Gardener
mooseyscountrygarden.com
http://www.mooseyscountrygarden.com

christine
contributor

15 Apr '07 2:16 pm
Isn't that bizarre - yes, the flowers look almost exactly like the viburnum lentago. Here is a bigger picture of the flowers of the mystery tree:

Image

And here is a link to a photo of the viburnum lentago flowers:

viburnum lentago flowers

If you notice however, the viburnum lentago leaves are slightly serrated - and my mystery tree's leaves are absolutely smooth edged...

Also, as for fruit or seeds, I'll have to report back later this year as last year I didn't pay attention. The usual minimum temp here is 40 - but it did go below freezing this past winter. It really did damage to all the Ficus and Bougainvillea but not the mystery tree.

The flowers might have a slight scent - my nose isn't what it used to be :)

Christine

zuzu's petals
valued member
User avatar
Coastal N.Carolina

Maybe ?

15 Apr '07 2:30 pm
[url=http://www.floridata.com/ref/V/viburn_o.cfm]Viburnum odoratissimum ("Sweet Viburnum")?
[/url]
~~*~~ zuzu ~~*~~


"Show me your garden and I shall tell you what you are."
~ Alfred Austin ~

christine
contributor

15 Apr '07 3:09 pm
Buy jove, I think you have it indeed!

Vibrunum 0doratissimum

Now that I read about it, I did notice a slight honeysuckle smell when I first clipped off some flowers.

Thanks so much!

Christine

zuzu's petals
valued member
User avatar
Coastal N.Carolina

Cool :-)

15 Apr '07 3:44 pm
Glad if I could help.
This is a tree that I recall from living in Florida,
it was a great workhorse sort of a plant, made a very good sound barrier.
I live just outside of their range now.
~~*~~ zuzu ~~*~~


"Show me your garden and I shall tell you what you are."
~ Alfred Austin ~

Jack Holloway
Passionate Gardener
User avatar
SEQUOIA FARM Haenertsburg South Africa

IDed

15 Apr '07 7:51 pm
Well done, Zuzu!

(May we call you that?)


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