Jumbo Tulip Trees vs Tulip Trees.

CavilerFebruary 4, 2014

Hello Y'all,

I get catalogues from half a dozen nurseries this time of year and in one of them came across a tree I never knew existed - the Jumbo Tulip Tree. A tree capable of 70'. It flowers, so said the catalog. My question is this. Are these full size cousins of the Tulip trees I know of simply the exact same plant just in a much larger size? Their properties, habits - everything - the same excepting size.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.

Thanks,
Jeremy

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i would suggest..

that you dont buy from catalogs that do not include the latin name ...

otherwise.. you are left wondering if they are a relative of ... carp.. whats a tulip tree.. lol ... SEE!!!! what i mean ... oh.. Liriodendron tulipifera

w/o the latin.. its all marketing hocus pocus ... and all you focus on is.. JUMBO .... which.. in the gardening world.. means.. wait for it.. NOTHING .....

call them and find out what the latin name is.. if there is no other way ;... and if they cant tell you.. find a better supplier...

never forget.. there is no instant gratification with trees.. and they never really stop growing.. so.. in the decades.. or centuries to follow.. they will all be jumbo ...

ken

    Bookmark   February 4, 2014 at 8:44PM
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toronado3800 Zone 6 StLouis(6)

Caviler, where in the world are you?

Up here when I see a listing for Magnolia grandiflora I see size listings that look bigger than the specimens I find around town. That is because I am at the northern end of their range.

Liriodendron tulipifera grows HUGE here. Seventy feet no problem.

FWIW I like them very much. If ya have the space to let the lower branches hang down to head height or so then they will have a better flower show. The flowers 30 to 100 feet up just aren't as close to the eye lol.

My neighbor has one which even happens to reliably get pretty good yellow fall color. Many are just serviceable in the fall. If he did not have one for me to watch whenever I would have planted one.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 12:12AM
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jimbobfeeny(5a IN)

Liriodendron tulipifera - The State Tree of Indiana! For good reason, too - With those big, bold leaves and flowers that brush the clouds, the tall stately trunks like pillars holding up the sky... I tend to wax poetic about Tulip Tree. In all seriousness, though, I really do like these trees. They grow very fast when young (3 to 5 feet in one year is not excessive), and have very interesting leaves! After American Chestnut died off, Tulip tree became the tallest hardwood in Eastern North America, capable of reaching heights of 200 feet! (USDA Forest service: " On the best sites, old-growth trees may be nearly 61 m (200 ft) high and 2.4 to 3.7 m (8 to 12 ft) d.b.h., but more often they are from 30.5 to 45.7 m (100 to 150 ft) at maturity, with a straight trunk 0.6 to 1.5 m (2 to 5 ft) in diameter"

I like Liriodendron!

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 7:32AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Liriodendron tulipifera, not Magnolia soulangeana.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 7:37AM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

I'd be curious to find out what tree they're referring to. "THE" Tulip Tree, Liriodendron tulipifera, already is "jumbo" and grows WELL over 70 feet, easily. There are 150-foot specimens around here in the woods.

They are probably calling some species of Magnolia a "tulip tree", but I'm not sure which one.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 8:42AM
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lucky_p

'Common' names sometimes present this problem, as others have already alluded to...

'Tulip tree', to me, has always been Liriodendron tulipifera, aka tulip poplar, yellow poplar, etc.
But, in some areas, 'tulip tree' is taken to mean Magnolia x soulangeana - or virtually any of the 'Little Girl' hybrid magnolias and their ilk. Growing up in Lower Alabama in the 1950s-60s, they were commonly called 'Japanese Magnolia'.

jimbob - Liriodendron is also the state tree of KY and TN; I've lamented KY moving away from Kentucky Coffeetree to Liriodendron, but they didn't ask me.
One year, when I was visiting with my son's 3rd grade class, discussing trees with them, the teacher unfurled the big classroom map of KY and there it was... in full color - the state tree...tulip tree... with a photo of M.soulangeana in full bloom...

This post was edited by lucky_p on Fri, Feb 7, 14 at 21:54

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 10:41AM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Based on my quick Google search, I'm pretty sure Jeremy saw the tree on one of Burgess Seed's sites. That company also sell under a number of other names (Direct Gardening, etc, etc), so the particular site might not have said Burgess Seed, but it was still probably them. They do have the regular and jumbo versions, but the jumbo, in this case, just refers to the size of the tree they send you, not the tree's potential. Both are Liriodendron tulipifera.

Generally, Ken's statement about "marketing hocus pocus" is exactly right. Burgess is the type of company to use all the marketing hocus pocus they can muster. Their Garden Watchdog rating is very poor. It appears a large percentage of their customers are disappointed. In fact, even a minimal effort would result in better reviews than that place has.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 1:02PM
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Caviler

I am in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The trees I have always known as Tulip Trees are trees that get about 12'-16' feet tall. Perhaps what I'm looking at isn't a Tulip Tree at all. The trees native to where I was born and raised and have lived all but 2 of my years in have names that, I suppose, might be called 'local.' A Tallow tree here is often called a Spanish Dollar tree, or a Dollar tree. That's the only one that springs to mind.

It's like someone here saying 'the river,' no one needs to ask which one - or, 'the basin,' everyone knows which one you're speaking of. New Orleanians have 'the lake.' etc. If I had an operational digital camera I'd snap one of the 'Tulip Tree' in my front yard - which apparently isn't.

And yes, it was Burgess.

Thanks, y'all - but one more thing. These 70' Tulip Trees, do they have gorgeous blooms all over them in the spring?

Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 5:19PM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

Caviler, your "Tulip Tree" is probably a Magnolia x soulangeana, does it look like this?

THE "Tuliptree" we're talking about, Liriodendron tulipifera, is sometimes called Yellow Poplar, or even just "Poplar", but, it's not a poplar at all. It looks like this:


    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 5:28PM
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toronado3800 Zone 6 StLouis(6)

I am stepping on my soap box.

If them idiots at Burgess did not list the scientific name, ug. What fools.

It would be like me telling you I am selling a dog and then showing up and holding out money for this hyena I expect you to buy.

Stupid double name system. Burgess may as well call it a stickamafart.

Off my soap box.

Good luck Caviler, there are better sources but either tree we are talking about has it merits.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 1:22AM
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Caviler

Err, Burgess DID list the scientific name. I have a big mea culpa here. Blame it on my inexperience.

Hairmetal, it is indeed that tree, a 'pink magnolia.' I would NEVER have considered it to have been a magnolia. If you've ever been down here we have 'real' magnolias (Magnolia grandiflora) EVERYWHERE. It's Mississippi's state tree and is on their vehicle license plates, but it's just as common here (actually have no idea how common it is in Miss, presumably the same, at least the southern half of the state).

So when this self-identified amateur thinks of magnolia, that and only that comes to mind. Everyone I know calls the pink magnolia a tulip tree. Granted, I am the one and only person interested in trees and gardening in my circle of acquaintances. I have even seen the proper tulip tree, and have never had cause to call it anything at all. It is DEFINITELY a tree I have no interest in planting.

I have heard, though, that some butterflie's caterpillars use it as a host (food) plant. Do y'all know which butterflies, offhand?

Thanks again!
Jeremy

    Bookmark   February 8, 2014 at 11:13AM
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