Kathy Mattea
Kathy Mattea talks about the southern magnolia. © David McClister

Stories in Tennessee

If Trees Could Sing: Kathy Mattea & the Southern Magnolia.

Kathy Mattea talks about the southern magnolia and the benefits that trees provide us.

Kathy Mattea

Folk and country singer Kathy Mattea revealed her deep love for her home state of West Virginia and her concerns about the harsh realities of the coal mining industry there and elsewhere on her 2008 album Coal. Her clear, strong alto has been heard on numerous country radio hits since the 1980s. She is a two-time Grammy Award winner and was named the Country Music Association's Female Vocalist of the Year two years running in 1989 and 1990. Her hit singles include "Eighteen Wheels and a Dozen Roses," "Goin' Gone," "Love at the Five and Dime" and "Where've You Been."

See more music artists talking about trees...

Kathy Mattea Kathy Mattea talks about the southern magnolia for The Nature Conservancy's "If Trees Could Sing" video series.

Southern Magnolia Facts

  • Scientific name: Magnolia grandiflora
  • Range: south from North Carolina to Florida and west to Texas
  • Height: up to 80 feet
  • Fruit: conelike and brown, covered in reddish hairs
  • Flowers: large, white, fragrant blooms
  • Distinguishing feature: broad, shiny green leaves

You Can Take Care of Trees Like the Southern Magnolia

  • Plant in late fall or winter when the tree is dormant, unless the ground is frozen. 
  • Allow plenty of room for the tree to mature and grow.
  • Water it regularly in its first three years.
  • Spread mulch around the base of the tree. 

Mighty Cool Tree Fact

Did you know... if every American family planted just one tree, carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would be reduced by a billion pounds a year?