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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    86

    Default Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    Curious about planting some in northeast Oklahoma. Large flowers, guess a good supply of nectar, wondering if the bees work the flowers.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    The bees work the one in my yard. Looks to be pollen only though.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Kingston, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    275

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    The bees work the one in my yard. Looks to be pollen only though.
    Need really high density of trees to get a surplus but I've heard that it produces really strong flavor honey, ie: smells good but taste really bad.
    All on second hand info, so you need a lot more research on it. They are really messy trees to have in the yard and that's first hand knowledge.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Stockholm, NJ, USA
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    It depends. I live in NWNJ and when my magnolia blooms it is still too cold for the bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Southeast Virginia
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    My neighbors magnolia literally buzzes when in bloom. I'm not sure if it's just pollen that they're collecting but they certainly are getting something. But I agree with UT's statement, very very messy. There is at least two species of magnolias that I know of though, maybe more, and I've been told that one species is not messy at all. For the life of me the name of the non messy one is escaping me at the moment of course.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Blacksburg, VA
    Posts
    454

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    Tulip Poplar is in the magnolia family and it is a major nectar (probably the largest) flow throughout the mid atlantic. Of course it is different in many ways from the classic southern magnolia.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Morro Bay, California, USA
    Posts
    957

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    From a book chapter by Dr. Gary Knox:
    Flowers do not produce nectar, but attract pollinating beetles with fragrant sugary secretions. Beetles of the Nitidulidae family are the primary pollinators of magnolia flowers, in part because magnolias evolved long before bees and other flying pollinators.
    Cite: http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hor...iles/chapter_9

    A paper of interest:
    Beetle Pollination and Floral Thermogenicity in Magnolia tamaulipana (Magnoliaceae)
    Gregg Dieringer, Leticia Cabrera R., Manuel Lara, Larisa Loya, and Pedro Reyes‐Castillo
    International Journal of Plant Sciences
    Vol. 160, No. 1 (January 1999), pp. 64-71
    From the abstract ---
    Our results indicate that M. tamaulipana possesses a highly specialized beetle pollination system involving Cyclocephala (Scarabaeidae: Dynastinae) and members of the Staphylinidae. Of the 366 insects visiting 213 flowers of M. tamaulipana, 364 were beetles. Cyclocephala caelestis accounted for 52% and Myrmecocephalus sp. for 46% of the visits.

    This blog has pix of bees (honey and bumble) working magnolia (at the stamen base, but notes that they are late arrivals.
    http://www.laterlivingblog.com/a-sum...rn-magnolia-2/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    I live in Tulsa and have a 30' Magnolia. They drop their huge leaves twice a year and the seed pods are 4" long. The highest maintenance tree I've ever seen, something's always dropping off of it. When the blooms fall off I get to deal with ants, roaches and snakes. But they do attract bees and those big Cacida killer wasps love them too.

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=eLfvpEJ7-Qc
    Last edited by Khild; 03-01-2014 at 10:14 PM. Reason: Add a link

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Clarendon County, SC, USA
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Are Magnolia trees benficial for bees?

    If you leave the limbs all the way to the ground, you can run the mower around the tree and blow all the leaves and pods back under the tree. No mess, no maintainence. Plus they look like a huge green Christmas tree.

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