Kathy Mattea holding a guitar in her lap and sitting on a concrete walkway in front of an old house.
Kathy Mattea talks about the southern magnolia. © David McClister

Stories in Tennessee

If Trees Could Sing: Kathy Mattea

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

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."

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.
Magnolia buds with an inch or so of snow sitting on top of them.
Sugar Magnolia A sugar magnolia remains dormant during a winter snowstorm. © Creative Commons/Philip Chapman-Bell

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?

Southern Magnolia Facts

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.

  • 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

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