Description Detail view of a magnolia tree in full bloom. Each spring these beautiful trees offer us a short lived but glorious showing of flowers. They are truly as magnificent from afar as they are close-up and as I have discovered a fascinating history.The flowering Magnolia tree is an ancient species, fossilized specimens have been dated back as much as 95 million years ago, appearing even before bees did. The flowers evolved to encourage pollination by beetles instead. Because of the damage beetles can cause the carpels or center of the flowers are extremely tough.Magnolia are a very diverse plant. The blossoms come in white, red, yellow, pink or purple. They can be deciduous and evergreen and have a wide array of leaf shapes. No matter the specimen the magnolia usually features large striking blossoms with petal like segments.