Q.

Can a Magnolia tree be dug up or somehow take a piece and start a new tree?

Zone 67010 | camijones added on January 13, 2019 | Answered

I planted a Magnolia tree about four years ago and its growing great! My problem is I may have to move soon and would really like to take it with me. Is it possible to dig it up and replant or possibly take a piece of it and start a new plant?

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MichiganDot
Answered on January 13, 2019

Regarding moving the magnolia: digging it up is best done by a landscape company which has the equipment to ensure the appropriate size rootball which is likely to be very heavy. The feeder roots are the tiny ones the furthest from the trunk so taking a rootball small enough to handle cuts off these vital roots. Magnolia, in particular, has roots that grow outward and not downward. If it is going to be about 6 months until moving day, you can sever several of the current large roots now and force them to regrow starting with small feeder roots. This ensures there will be some feeder roots in a hand dug tree or shrub. Moving a small tree or large shrub is difficult for you physically and traumatic for the plant. Success isn't ensured. This is an article on DIY transplanting of magnolia: https://www.doityourself.com/stry/transplanting-a-magnolia-tree

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MichiganDot
Answered on January 13, 2019

Magnolias are difficult to propagate from cuttings and winter is not a good time to try it. Also, make sure the are to which you are moving has weather compatible with the type of magnolia you have. The various species have different cold tolerance. The following article discusses several options for propagating magnolia. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/trees/magnolia/propagating-magnolia-trees.htm

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