Magnolia seed pods

Magnolia seed pods

Magnolia pods are unique and look great in any setting. The curved shape adds depth to the forest floor and protects small animals. Springtails love these pods because they are thick and porous.

Once magnolia petals fall off, seed pods appear. These pods look like cones and contain red berries that attract birds and squirrels. Inside the berries are magnolia seeds. Sometimes, a magnolia seedling may grow under the tree if conditions are right.

Growing Magnolia Seeds

To grow magnolia seeds, you need to harvest fresh seeds from the tree’s berries. Make sure the parent tree is not a hybrid, as the new tree may not resemble it. It can take a lot of time to notice any mistakes in the planting process.

Harvesting Magnolia Seed Pods

When harvesting magnolia seed pods to find seeds in early fall, ensure all berries or pods have fully grown into a mature red and ripe berry.

Separate the fleshy fruit from the seeds and soak them overnight in lukewarm water. On day 2, use a hardware cloth or wire screen to remove any dust particles that accumulate around each seed and remove its outer coating.

Stratification: Magnolia seeds need to be stratified before germinating. Combine your seeds in a container with damp sand and mix well; however, ensure the moisture doesn’t cause too much flow when squeezed by hand.

Refrigerate the container of seeds for at least three months before planting them out in early spring. Taking it out of the fridge and placing it on your kitchen tables sends a signal that winter has passed, and now it is time to plant magnolia trees from seed.

To collect magnolia seeds:

1. Choose red seed pods that are fully matured.

2. Separate the seeds from the pods and soak in warm water all night.

3. Brush them through a piece of wire to remove the outer layer.

4. Before sowing, stratify the seeds by mixing them with moist sand in a container.

5. Make sure the sand is dry enough.


Before sowing, the red or orange fleshy seed covering must be removed in order to sow successfully. Soak the seeds overnight and then remove the wrapping. To remove the mushy substance, you may need to brush the seeds against a cleaning pad or window screen.

Choose a place with rich, moist soil that is slightly acidic (pH < 7.0).

First-year seedlings prefer a partially shaded area, but mature trees need full sun, so start the seeds in a nursery bed and gently transfer them into their permanent home in the spring of the second year.

Cover seeds with 1/4 inch of soil and mulch to protect them from drying out as the seedbed must remain moist until spring comes along and germination takes place.

Grow Magnolia from Seed

When starting from seed, planting magnolia trees requires sowing the seeds either directly into the ground or in pots during spring.

Cover the seeds with a 1/4-inch layer of soil and keep them moist until the seedlings appear.

Mulch can help the soil retain moisture as magnolia seedlings take root, as well as providing necessary protection from direct sunlight in their initial year of development.


• Avoid storing seeds at room temperature over the winter. They lose health and will not germinate if planted.

• When people come into contact with magnolia seeds, they may acquire a rash.

• Named cultivar seeds are more likely to grow well than species plants. The seedlings from these seeds may look different from the parent plant in terms of size, flower color, and other traits. Expect significant variance from your parent plant when growing the seedlings from these named cultivars.

Collecting Seed/Purchasing seed:

Commercial seed dealers usually don’t have magnolia seeds because they are hard to keep. If you are buying magnolia seeds online, make sure that seeds are in best condition and also check seller reviews before making a purchase.

Your best bet is to get seeds from a nearby tree in the fall.

Magnolias make a seed pod that looks like a pine cone but is actually a group of follicles. Each follicle has bright red or orange seeds under it. Pick the seed pods when the fruit is ripe, usually between mid-September and early October. If you can’t see the seeds yet, let the pods dry in a shady spot until the follicles open and show the seeds. Then, shake the seeds into a bowl or container.

In Conclusion

Planting magnolia seeds is an enjoyable gardening experience for any gardener. While harvesting and planting these seeds requires precision and patience, the result of growing magnolia trees is well worth the work. By following the instructions in this article, you can successfully start growing magnolia trees from seeds yourself and enjoy its beauty for many years ahead – why not add natural beauty to your yard with these lovely magnolia seed pods! Happy planting!


What do you do with magnolia seed pods?

Magnolia seed pods can serve a multitude of functions. One popular application is in crafts and DIY projects, where they can be painted, decorated or used as garlands to beautify decoration items like chaplets.

Magnolia pods may also be used as mulch or compost material in gardening for enriching soil health. Gardeners even collect seeds from them to plant new magnolia trees!

Does animals like magnolia seed pods?

Yes. Birds and small animals like squirrels like magnolia seed pods.

What is a magnolia seed pod called?

Magnolia seed pods (also known as cones or fruits) contain magnolia tree seeds. They typically form after blooms have been pollinated and fertilized before eventually splitting open to release their contents. Their structure and appearance vary by species but are usually distinguished by a cone-like form and woody feel.

Can you eat magnolia seed pods?

Avoid eating magnolia seed pods since they might be toxic in excessive quantities. Some magnolia species produce edible fruits, but many seeds and pods contain compounds that can induce stomach upset or other problems if consumed. It’s advisable to avoid consuming magnolia seed pods.

Should I Cut Off Magnolia Seed Pods?

In general, it is advisable to remove magnolia seed pods so the tree can focus more energy on branches and build establishment, however this decision ultimately depends on your goals for the plant. Removing seed pods may help with flowering and growth.

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