I've caught a huge cold and feel miserable, so this view from my kitchen windows is about as much I can manage to blog despite all spring ephemerals sprouting up in my backyard.
My next door neighbours' - a couple in their late 80s - amazing Magnolia soulangeana is just starting to open its shell-pink buds. This probably 50 years old tree reaches up to at least 8 meters into the sky and provides a breathtaking show every spring - we live uphill from them and get to admire its large goblet-formed blooms at "eye level", which is fantastic.
Magnolias must have been the "it-plant" in the 60s when many of the older homes in this area were built; I think they would definitely be a good enough reason to buy any of the houses when they come to the market; you can always redo the house, but you can't buy 50 years of "Magnolia time" in any other way. Unfortunately, most house buyers of my generation don't share my opinion and rip them off from the way of their all too large, new mansions.
Another old house close-by that I could buy just for the sake of the huge Magnolia in front - my definition of 'curb-appeal' is a bit different from most real estate agents, I guess... I would put a wicker chair under it and sip some champagne under its amazing canopy of shell-pink blooms.