“Joy of Youth”-Beautiful Lilacs. Lilacs belong to the olive family,”Oleaceae”and there are more than 1,000 varieties of lilac bushes and trees.
Did You Know…The flowers are edible.
Most are familiar with the common lilac, Syringa vulgaris, which blooms in the northern states for 2 weeks in late May,there are early to mid and late season, which ensure a steady bloom for at least 6 weeks.
Did You Know…There are more than 1,000 varieties of lilac bushes and trees.
Lilacs are easy to grow and very low maintenance. They can grow from 5 to 15 feet tall, depending on the variety. The fragrant flowers are good for cutting. The tree lilac,”Syringa reticulata”, can grow to 25 feet tall. Purple lilacs are most fragrant.
What do lilac flowers represent?
In the language of flowers–Blue lilacs symbolize happiness and tranquility.
White lilacs symbolize purity and innocence.
Violet lilacs symbolize spirituality.
Magenta lilacs symbolize love and passion.
Lilac, the color for which this flower is named, is a light purple that symbolizes a first love.
Select a site where your lilac will get full sun—at least 6 hours. If lilacs don’t get enough sun, they will not bloom well.
Lilacs will not bloom with too much water. Make sure the site drains well.
Plant in either spring or fall.
Transplanting lilacs from a nursery is very easy. Spread out the roots as you settle the plant into the ground, 2 or 3 inches deeper than it grew in the nursery, and work topsoil in around the roots.
Water during the summer if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week.
Do not over fertilized.
- After your lilac bush has finished blooming trim the bush to shape it, and remove suckers at the same time.
Did You Know…The New Hampshire state flower is the lilac. “Live Free or Die indeed.”
Want a big lilac bush? Prune them less often. ( least once a year!)
Lilacs bloom on old wood- it’s critical to prune in the spring right after they bloom. If you prune later in the summer, you may be removing the wood.
If your lilac flower clusters are getting smaller,it is time to prune
Prune out the oldest canes. Remove the small suckers. Cut back tall canes and weak branches.
If your lilac is old and in really bad shape, remove one-third of the oldest canes
It must be recognized that severe pruning results in the loss of blooms for 1 to 3 years.
Did You Know…Some varieties of lilac bushes can survive temperatures down to -60°F. (-51 C)
The most common and fragrant lilacs are of the S. vulgaris variety:
- For early bloom, try ‘Charles Joly’ Charles Joly Lilac is a deciduous shrub with enchanting, scented flowers.
- Mid-season lilacs –‘Monge’, and ‘Firmament’ features a mid-spring bloom of fragrant, pink/blue-lavender
- Late-season – ‘Miss Canada’, and ‘Donald Wyman’ –very large lavender-purple flower with a sweet fragrance. Donald Wyman and Miss Canada varieties can grow two stories tall.
PESTS / DISEASES
- During Hot and Humid weather white mildew may appear but it does no harm plant
- Lilac are prone to attack by snails and slugs.
TIP & WISDOM
To improve the flowering of lilacs, keep the grass from growing around them. (16- to 24-inch circle)
Poet Walt Whitman thought of lilacs when Abraham Lincoln died:
“When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom’d … I mourn’d, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.”
Lilacs symbolize the “Joy of Youth”
Enjoy that sweet, haunting fragrance!
Photo Credit pixabay.com