Banana Magnolia – No Fragrant Flower, Sparse, And Yellow Leaves

Q: We have a banana magnolia at the edge of our lot. For the last two years has been looking bad: no fragrant flowers, leaves are sparse, and some are yellow. 

A: Banana magnolia, Magnolia figo, is one of the most fragrant landscape plants around. Is common for evergreen plants like this to have yellow leaves in spring. Yours seems to be declining more than normal. Get a 1.5 cubic foot bag of soil conditioner and dump it into a wheelbarrow. Add a quart of Holly-Tone, Milorganite or cottonseed meal. Mix thoroughly. Rake out the mulch under your tree and scatter a half-inch layer of your enriched soil mixture in its place. Use a spading fork or a pitchfork to repeatedly jab holes in the soil to loosen it and mix in the new material. The combination of the rich organic matter and increased root aeration should bring your plant back to health.

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