Athene is a large-flowered magnolia hybrid, a cross between magnolia „Mark Jury“ and magnolia x soulangeana „Lennei Alba“. The flowers have almost white petals with deep red or purple red shades at the bottom. They are very fragrant and reach 25-30 cm across when fully opened. It is an early variety which is easily detectable by the large flower buds which overwinter on the plants from the previous season. Their enormous size is an added value especially in winter when the trees are without leaves.The leaves are deciduous, fresh green, ovate to obovate and densely cover the whole plant. Young plants have upright growth and when they reach about 1.5m they slow down and become more rounded producing profusion of flower buds on short branches. Mature trees and shrubs are well rounded, and in Central-European conditions they get about 4m tall and wide.
Magnolias are not supposed to be pruned. You can prune old shrubs if ill, or trim them to shape or to reduce size, or make an elementary cut to young plants of unsightly or unhealthy appearance. Do this as soon as possible after flowering to secure setting of flower buds for the following year. Be aware that each magnolia can respond differently to pruning.
Deciduous magnolias are quite easy plants. All they need is light, well-drained, acidic soil with equal moisture throughout the year. Once established they can do with occasional drought but will not look as nice as the ones with regular watering. Just pay attention to how to plant your magnolia. First, find it a spot where it will live forever and ever. It does not like transplanting. And as it makes shallow roots reaching well over its spread stay away from disturbing the roots by digging or messing about around it. Just cover the soil with bark mulch and do not plant anything else near it after say the second year after planting onwards. You could damage the very important top roots that absorb maximum moisture and nutrients from the soil. Also avoid planting magnolia too deep. Its hardiness is confirmed to -24°C (USDA zone 6), but is expected to go yet a few degrees lower.
Size/type: taller shrub
Usual height: 3-4m
Usual width: 3-4m
Leaves: deciduous broadleaf
Colour of leaves: green
Colour of flowers: white a deep red
Blooming time: april - april
Location: full to partial sun
Usda zone (lowest): 6 (down to -23°c)
Belongs to categories: deciduous broadleaf magnolias
155 00 Praha Stodůlky, Za Mototechnou 2673/-11