Magnol invented of the concept of plant families, a natural classification, based on combinations of morphological character. "In his Prodromus he developed 75 tables, which not only grouped plants into families but also allowed for an easy and rapid identification by means of the morphological characters, the same he used to compose the groups....In 1703 Charles Plumier (1646–1704) named a flowering tree from the island of Martinique Magnolia, after Magnol. The name was later adopted by William Sherard, when he did the nomenclatural parts of Hortus Elthamensis by Johann Jacob Dillenius, and The Natural History of Carolina by Mark Catesby, to denote a flowering tree now known as Magnolia virginiana, taking it for the same species as that described by Plumier. Linnaeus took over this name in the first edition of Species plantarum, including references to both Plumier's and Sherard's names. In this way, Magnolia became the generally recognized name of a large genus of ornamental flowering trees"
(Wikipedia article on Pierre Magnol, accessed 8-21). Digital facsimile from Google Books at this link.