The Giant Magnolia

The magnolia is probably the first tree on earth to have flowers.

This tree appeared on the earth 140 million years ago, and is American in origin like The Sequoia tree. It measures up to 30 Metres in height and one of the magnolias at La Bambouseraie measures 35 Metres high making it the highest in The Gard department and the second highest in France ! The highest tree is in Sorgues in The Vaucluse department of France.

L'élégante fleur du magnolia grandiflora

The name magnolia is derived from Pierre Magnol, a doctor, french botanist and the director of the Botanical gardens of Montpellier. Around 1790 when the species was introduced in Europe, but arrived in France at Malmaison in 1806. The magnolia grandiflora was planted in all the grandest gardens at the end of the XVIII century. It was seen as a status symbol  much like the cedar at this time.

Botanical info :

This tree likes the sun, siliceous soil and proximity to water. It is also hardy.

The flowering of magnolia grandiflora is quite spread out from May to August. It has large, white, flowers that have a short lifespan ( 1 or 2 days). These flowers are often used in the fabrication of perfume. 

Uses :

In Chinese medicine magnolia bark is used for treating diverse health problems, reputed for helping the circulation of energy; ingesting the magnolia bark is used to help anxiety, stress and insomnia.