Southern Magnolia trees (Magnolia grandiflora) were one of the earliest flowering plants, evolving millions of years ago when the most basic pollinators such as beetles and flies were available to assist in pollination. Eventually bees, moths, butterflies and wasps evolved to pollinate its lush blossom. The magnolia flower emerges from a furry husk that expands and cracks open to expose a green bud. The tough, leathery petals splay out into a 8-12" wide blossom with a colorful gynoecium at the center, which is made up of curled carpals and tightly-packed stamen. The flowers open during the day and close up at night. They only lasting for 2-3 days, at which time the stamen drop into the lower petals, and eventually to the ground. The brightly-colored fruit swells to 4 times the size and eventually dries into a brown, furry seedpod. The life cycle concludes when the follicles pop open to reveal 1-2 bright red seeds suspended from silky threads. These seeds are high in fat and become essential sustenance for migrating songbirds.