Trees or shrubs, deciduous or evergreen, aromatic. Pith homogeneous or diaphragmed. Leaves alternate, simple, petiolate; stipules early or tardily deciduous, at first surrounding stem, adnate on adaxial side of petiole (free in Magnolia grandiflora), often ochreate, leaving persistent annular scar around node. Leaf blade pinnately veined, unlobed (or evenly 2-10-lobed in Liriodendron), margins entire. Inflorescences terminal, solitary flowers (often paired in Magnolia ashei), pedunculate; spathaceous bracts 2 (Magnolia) or 1 (Liriodendron). Flowers: perianth hypogynous, segments imbricate; tepals deciduous, 6-18, in 3 or more whorls of 3, ± similar or outer tepals sepaloid, inner tepals petaloid; stamens numerous, hypogynous, free, spirally arranged; filaments very short to 1/2 length of anthers; anthers introrse, latrorse, or extrorse, longitudinally dehiscent; connective with distal appendage; pistils numerous, superior, spirally arranged on elongate receptacle (torus), stalked or sessile, free or ±concrescent, 1-locular; placentation marginal, placenta 1; ovules 1-2; style 1, short and recurved (Magnolia) or large and winglike (Liriodendron); stigma 1, terminal or terminal decurrent (Magnolia) or recurved (Liriodendron). Fruits conelike syncarps consisting of aggregates of coalescent, woody follicles (follicetums, as in Magnolia) or apocarps consisting of aggregates of indehiscent samaras (samaracetums, as in Liriodendron). Seeds 1-2 per pistil, arillate, endosperm oily (Magnolia), or without aril, adherent to dry endocarp (Liriodendron).
Mostly in Asia, the Pacific Islands, and the Western Hemisphere.
Genera ca. 6(-12), species ca. 220 (2 genera, 9 species in the flora).
Magnoliaceae are pollinated by beetles.
Herbarium material of Magnolia is usually incomplete and inadequate for critical study. Collections should include material of the stipules, spathaceous bracts, a full complement of stamens, and all of the perianth segments to facilitate identification of Magnolia species.
|1||Leaf blade entire, base deeply cordate or auriculate, or cuneate to abruptly narrowed or rounded, apex obtuse or acute to acuminate; stipules adnate on petiole or rarely free, early deciduous; tepals petaloid, usually spreading, creamy white, rarely greenish or yellow to orange-yellow, outermost tepals sepaloid, sometimes reflexed, greenish; anthers introrse or latrorse; follicles persistent, coalescent; seeds with brightly colored aril, extruded from follicles and suspended by funiculi.||Magnolia|
|1||Leaf blade evenly 2-10-lobed, base rounded to shallowly cordate or truncate, apex broadly truncate or notched; stipules free, erect, leafy, tardily deciduous; tepals petaloid, tip recurved, greenish yellow with feathered orange band near base, outermost tepals sepaloid, reflexed, green; anthers extrorse; samaras caducous, forming elongate spindle-shaped dry cone, indehiscent; seeds without aril, adherent to dry endocarp.||Liriodendron|