List of Edible Magnolia Flowers

There is apparently no known toxicity to magnolia (unless you have an allergy). However I wanted to find magnolia species that have traditionally been used in human culture and recorded in the food record.

Outside the list below, you are on your own. Personally I try them all and my friend Kim Walker who works at Kew did an interesting magnolia taste test with a colleague.

According to Thomas Elpel in his fantastic book Botany in a Day (6th edition), there are 7 genera and about 220 species in the magnolia family.

I have spent considerable time exploring which species have edible magnolia flowers. Below is a list of the ones that I have found in the ethnobotanical record. It is by no means an exhaustive list.

Edible Magnolia Flowers

  • Magnolia coco 2
  • Magnolia grandiflora 2, 3
  • Magnolia denudata 2, 3
  • Magnolia hypoleuca 2, 3
  • Magnolia kobus 2, 3
  • Magnolia liliflora 6
  • Magnolia mexicana 5
  • Magnolia pterocarpa 2
  • Magnolia soulangeana 1

Edible Magnolia Flower Recipes

References

  1. Hu, S. (2005) Food Plants of China. Hong Kong: Chinese University Press.
  2. Kunkel, G. (1984) Plants for Human Consumption: An Annotated Checklist of the Edible Phanerogams and Ferns. Koenigstein: Koeltz Scientific Books.
  3. Facciola, S. (1998) Cornucopia II: A Source Book of Edible Plants. Vista, CA: Kampong Publications.
  4. Sturtevant, E. L. (1972) Sturtevant’s Edible Plants of the World. New York: Dover Publications.
  5. Standley, P. C. & Steyermark, J. A. (1949) Flora of Guatemala. Fieldiana. Chicago, Ill.: Chicago Natural History Museum.
  6. Liziqi: Riding a Horse to Find Magnolia Liliflora Blossoms

Share Your Experience. Leave A Note For Others

  1. I was wondering if the magnolia liliiflora is edible? I have those all over my yard but I find things that say they are and some say they aren’t.

  2. The trouble with these type of recipes is many/most of us will have a magnolia not on your list. Are the others not worth trying, not tested, or just maybe not recommended, for whatever reason? Are any magnolias dangerous when used in this way?

  3. I’ve only listed the ones that have been recorded as edible in other cultures. I have no idea about the other species.

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