Moonglow® Sweet Bay Magnolia Tree

As low as $129.59 was $159.99
Availability: In stock

Compact, Fragrant Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia Tree

  • Gorgeous, Creamy-White Fragrant Flowers
  • Blooms are Cup-Shaped, and Feature Eight Large Petals
  • Blooms Late Spring through Summer
  • Large-Leaved Green Foliage Has Silver Undersides
  • Showy Red Seeds Feed the Birds
  • Semi-Evergreen
  • Easy Care Lawn Specimen, or for Borders and Beds
  • Stays Compact, Great Size for Modern Yards
  • Can Be Planted Near Houses
  • Widely Adaptable, Cold Hardy and Heat Tolerant
  • Works Beautifully in Wet Areas and Humid Summers
  • Tolerates Wet and Boggy Soils
  • Deer Tend to Leave it Alone

The clean, fresh fragrance of our native Sweet Bay Magnolia is one of early summer's great experiences. Nature Hills is proud to offer one of the best cultivars of this beloved tree. Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana 'Jim Wilson') stays narrow and compact.

It will fit the space beautifully, even in smaller gardens. And graceful Moonglow Sweetbay Magnolia looks good all year-long, with smooth, attractive bark and well-balanced branch structure.

You'll want to be watching for the prominent flower buds to start to unfurl from late spring through summer. The lovely, creamy flowers open into a lavish cup-shape and offer a hint of lemony fragrance.

Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia flowers will perfume your yard for weeks in a good year.The lavish display opens later, after all chances of frost. Use them in cut flower arrangements, or plan a yearly family picture under the Sweet Bay.

Enjoy flowers throughout the early summer. They are infused with a fresh, citrusy scent that brightens your mood, and layers in amazing scents to your landscape design.

Butterflies love the flowers, too. They'll come calling for nectar, and add their airy, vivid motion to your landscape.

These flowers are great in cut flower arrangements. Cut some of the blooming branches for a tall vase, or float a bloom or two in a shallow dish of water.

You may see sporadic, fragrant, creamy-white blooms throughout the season. Take advantage of them with a sharp set of garden snips and a vase on hand.

This entire tree is sweetly fragrant. You'll be pleased to know that the roots, branches and leaves smell sweet and spicy, a bit like vanilla. Smooth bark has a handsome, metallic gray overcast.

The large, elongated leaves are very attractive, as well. The two-toned foliage is glossy, dark green on the top. The underneath has a silvery-white coating that catches the sunlight in a flashy display.

If you have mild winters, your Moonglow Sweet Bay leaves will likely remain on the tree all year-long. In colder climates, the semi-evergreen leaves are deciduous and fall off for winter.

Local songbirds love the showy, red seeds that brighten up in fall. Look fast, as birds take them quickly!

Moonglow tolerates clay soils and standing water. It laughs at arctic cold, and thrives in high heat and humidity.

Feel great about this choice. It's a beautiful tree, and can be used in so many modern landscape application. Place your order for Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia trees now!

How to Use Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia in the Landscape

Take time and enjoy the process of siting your new Magnolia tree. They won't like to be moved once they get their roots settled in your soil.

Use several of these useful trees in an elegant flowering privacy hedge. Allow the full lower branches to fill in all the way down the trunk.

For a solid screen, plant 8 feet apart on center. You'll measure from the center of one to the center of the next. The canopies will grow together and touch.

They look great decorating your pool deck, while screening out any prying eyes. Raise the height of your existing fence with a "living green fence."

Moonglow has a nice root system, and can be used near your house. Try one 15 feet away from the corner of your house as an anchor for your foundation planting.

Compact Moonglow won't overshadow your home. Instead, it becomes a wonderful accent that your whole neighborhood will appreciate.

Double the marvelous springtime scent and sight of those lovely creamy blooms with two as a set of lawn trees on either side of your front walk. Just watch that any nitrogen-rich lawn fertilizer stays far away; or you'll risk growing lots of leaves, but not many flowers.

Create a natural-looking, informal grouping with multiple trees and varied spacing. Use on a berm, or behind your patio seating.

These plants look incredible near water and they tolerate periodic flooding. Create a hard-working, great-looking garden feature with a Rain Garden to help filter captured rainwater.

Or, plant them along a water feature, creek or pond. They'll thrive in woodland settings, as well.

Northern gardeners can enjoy these magnificent Magnolias in your landscape. In the coldest zones, provide a sheltered spot to protect your investment.

#ProPlantTips for Care

Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia loves full sun all day long. You'll have the best flowering with at least 6 hours of direct sunlight a day.

Give them any kind of soil, including periodically wet soils. They'll handle clay soils easily. With a nickname like "Swamp Magnolia", you get the picture.

They do best in slightly acidic soils. Mulch with pine bark or pine straw to a depth of three inches for a natural boost of acidity that breaks down over time. Pull mulch away from your trunk 6 inches and reapply regularly.

Give it a regular schedule of supplemental water, if rainfall isn't sufficient. This is especially important when the plants are young.

Once they are established, older plants can tolerate a bit of occasional drought. However, we recommend that you protect your investment with supplemental water as needed.

Prune after the spring bloom. Moonglow develops into a natural column or vase-shape. For best results, follow the natural line of the tree while pruning for shape.

Keep it as a tree form with a single central leader by removing all but one of the base stems. Remove lower limbs.

You can grow it as a privacy tree with all the lower limbs left intact. Allow additional base stems to grow, as well.

Deer don't tend to prefer this tree. However, if you have heavy deer pressure in your area, apply deer repellent on planting day. Reapply according to directions on the label.

You'll be thrilled to own a Moonglow Sweet Bay Magnolia. Order yours from the expert growers at Nature Hills today!

Tree Form vs. Shrub Form

The details make all the difference in a garden. At, we understand that little things like what form a plant is can greatly impact how you plan your landscape. So before you buy, don’t forget to check which form you’re getting.

Tree Form: 

These are plants that have one stem coming from the ground. Plants can also be considered single stem when lower branches are removed to raise the height of the branching to a more desired height. Sometimes, you will hear a tree form referred to as a single stem.

Shrub Form:

These are bushy plants with many stems and branchings close to the ground. They are referred to as shrubs or bushes and are often shorter than their tree forms. 

Buying Options for Plants

Nature Hills sells a large variety of plants with several options available. Plants are offered in both potted containers and as dormant bare root without soil. Here is a helpful resource to understand your options as you create a beautiful landscape with help from Nature Hills.

Ever wonder what a larger plant will mean for your landscape? Container Sizes are really all about the age of the plant!

Seasonally, Nature Hills offers hand selected, high quality bare root trees, shrubs and perennials. Bare root plants are sold by height from the top of the root system to the top of the plant. Plants may be taller than the height minimums.

  • Popular sizes of select trees are 1 foot, 2 feet, 3 feet, etc.
  • Popular sizes of select bare root plants is 1 foot, 18 inches, etc.

Nature Hills Container Size by Volume

Keep in mind, specific varieties and different growing conditions can affect the rate at which plants grow. Variations in size may occur.

Young Plants to 18 Months
Size Volume
2"x2"x3" Ranges from .18 to .21 dry quarts / .198 to .23 dry liters in volume
4.5" Container Equal to .65 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
Sprinter Pot Equal to .63 dry quart / .69 dry liter in volume
4" Container Ranges from .31 to .87 / .35 to .96 dry liter in volume
6" Container Equal to 1.4 dry quarts / 1.59 dry liters in volume
1 Quart Equal to 1 dry quart / 1.1 dry liter in volume
5.5" Container Equal to 1.89 of a dry quart / 2.08 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x5" Ranges from .8 to 1.1 dry quarts / .88 to 1.2 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x6" Ranges from 1.0 to 1.3 dry quarts / 1.1 to 1.41 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x9" Ranges from 1.1 to 2.1 dry quarts / 1.2 to 2.3 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x10" Ranges from 1.7 to 2.3 dry quart / 1.87 to 2.53 dry liters in volume
Plants 18 Months - 2.5 Years Old
Size Volume
2 Quart Equal to 2 dry quarts / 2.2 dry liters in volume
#1 Container Ranges from 2.26 to 3.73 dry quarts / 2.49 to 4.11 dry liters in volume
5"x5"x12" Equal to 3.5 to 4.3 dry quarts / 3.85 to 4.74 dry liters in volume
Plants 2 - 4 Years Old
Size Volume
#2 Container Ranges from 1.19 to 1.76 dry gallons / 5.24 to 7.75 dry liters in volume
#3 Container Ranges from 2.32 to 2.76 dry gallons / 10.22 to 12.16 dry liters in volume
Plants 3 - 5 Years Old
Size Volume
#5 Container Ranges from 2.92 to 4.62 dry gallons / 12.86 to 20.35 dry liters in volume
#6 Container Ranges from 5.25 to 6.01 dry gallons / 23.12 to 26.42 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

About Plant Sentry™

Plant Sentry is designed to protect both consumers and the nursery trade from invasive plant pests and diseases. Sites that display the Plant Sentry protection badge are protected from consumers buying and nurseries shipping material carrying invasive pests and diseases.

This proprietary eCommerce software prevents the shipment of a restricted plant to each state. The Plant Sentry system includes a shipment certification program. The Plant Sentry Compliance Officer works closely with and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

Click Here to learn more

Plant Sentry


To obtain a more accurate shipment time-frame, simply enter your zip code in the “Find Your Growing Zone” box to the right. Our plants are grown all over the country and lead time on items may be different because of this. Once your order is placed, you will also receive the specific shipment time-frame information as part of your order confirmation. Once an item ships, you will receive shipment notification and tracking numbers, so you can follow along while your plant travels to your doorstep. We use FedEx, UPS, or USPS at our discretion.

Due to winter weather we have put a hold on shipping to the areas shown below in grey. You can still order now and we will ship the plant to you during an appropriate time for your zone.

*If you have found your zone already, it will be highlighted in the table below.
Color Zone Times
3 Spring 2019
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Shipping Rates

At Nature Hills we handle, package and ship the products you order with the utmost care to ensure healthy delivery. Shipping and handling charges are calculated based on the tables below. Please note that some items include an additional handling surcharge, these will be noted on the item's product page.

From To S&H
0 - 19.99 24.99
20 - 49.99 29.99
50 - 69.99 34.99
70 - 99.99 39.99
100 - 129.99 44.99
130 - 149.99 48.99
150 - 150+ Approx 28%

Click here to see our full rates


Moonglow® Sweet Bay Magnolia Tree Is Suited to Grow in Zones 5-10
Growing Zones 5-10
More Information
Brand Nature Hills' Choice
Botanical Name Magnolia virginiana 'Jim Wilson'
Type Evergreen
Mature Height 15 - 35 feet
Mature Spread 10 - 20 feet
Sun Exposure Full Sun
Soil Tolerates Wet Soils
Moisture Medium
Growth Rate Medium
Foliage Color Green
Fall Color Evergreen
Pollinator Friendly Yes
Pruning Time After Flowering
Fragrant Yes