Green Bay Botanical Garden is proud to be recognized as a Magnolia Multisite Collection™, the only Plant Collections Network (PCN) collection in the state of Wisconsin. The Garden is home to 146 magnolias and 122 taxa, of which 17 taxa are unique to the PCN. Located in USDA Hardiness zone 5a (-20°F to -15°F is the average annual minimum winter temperature), ours is the coldest site in the Magnolia Multisite Collection. However, in the winter of 2019 temperatures of -26°F and -25°F were recorded at the Garden, which is equivalent to USDA Hardiness zone 4b!
Many of our cultivars (magnolia varieties) represent the breeding work of local magnolia hybridizer, Dennis Ledvina. Dennis’s work concentrated on creating magnolias with unique characteristics including:
The Plant Collections Network coordinates a continent-wide approach to plant germplasm (genetic material) preservation, and promotes excellence in plant collections management. Today, the Plant Collections Network includes over 140 accredited collections throughout North America, stewarded by over 80 participating institutions.
More than 15 arboreta and botanical gardens across the US, Canada and Mexico curate the Nationally Accredited Multisite Magnolia Collection, which consists of over 625 magnolia species. In 2018, Green Bay Botanical Garden attained Nationally Accredited status. The multi-institutional collaborative approach allows for the curation and study of Magnolia to occur at a magnitude unachievable by a single site, with the potential to expand as the group continues to grow both in size and regional diversity.
Some of the cultivars that Dennis bred are Magnolia ‘Oriental Charm’ x ‘Fruit Cup’, Magnolia ‘Silk Road’ x ‘Angel Mist’, and Magnolia ‘Silk Road’ x ‘Oriental Charm’. Other unique magnolias in Green Bay Botanical Garden’s collection include a variegated form of Magnolia ‘Butterflies’ and Magnolia cylindrica (octoploid). See a complete list of our collection.
The Garden has six acres to develop and will continue to incorporate magnolias that extend Dennis Ledvina’s goal of cold hardiness and Green Bay Botanical Garden’s mission of cultivating an appreciation for the enduring relationship between plants and people.
Visit the collection in May to experience its magnificent blooms and considering adding one of our varieties to your home garden.