Such is the story of my M. loebneri 'Leonard Messel' that sits out in the open on the north side of our backyard.
This photo was taken four years ago and the shrub is much taller and wider now but not quite fully opened yet. The mature height should be 4 m (about 15 feet) but with two previous summers of good rain, he has exceeded the expectations.
Kind of spindly to look at overall but the flower buds and the flowers when they open, well, they are magnificent!
Can't you just feel the soft down on the bud as it is about to open?
With delicate pink petals, you can see why anyone would want this variety of magnolia.
Gardening friends said this shrub wouldn't live because it is only rated to zone 6 in books and is at risk to wind where it is located. But, it has the will to survive and will hopefully continue to bloom for many more years.