The fragrance of an old-fashioned lilac in bloom is aromatherapy at its finest. European in origin, these tall, open, deciduous shrubs don't look like much when they are not in bloom, but in late spring to early summer they become brag-worthy. Luminous panicles of purple, lavender, white or pink flowers appear along their branches. Next year's flower buds are set shortly after blooming, so lilacs must be pruned directly after their yearly display.
Lilacs are easy-to-grow and do best in full sun and average soil with good drainage. Lilac borers can be a problem, so keep an eye out for their telltale half-moon shaped holes along the trunks. These shrubs are fine feature plants and especially sweet when planted in masses. Cut their fresh blossoms for fragrant, long-lasting flower arrangements. (info source: Learn2Grow.com)
Succeeds in most soils, including chalk, but dislikes acid soils. Prefers a deep stiff well-drained loam in a warm sunny position. A very ornamental plant, it does tend to sucker quite freely though. There are many named varieties, developed for their ornamental value. The flowers attract butterflies and moths. Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus.
Genus - Syringa
Species - Vulgaris
Common name - Lilac
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 4 - 8
Height - 20' / 6 m
Plant type - Shrub
Vegetation type - Deciduous
Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Medium
Soil PH - Neutral, alkaline
Soil type - Clay, Loam, Sand, Well Drained
Water requirements - Average Water
Landscape uses - Feature Plant, Foundation, Hedges, Mixed Border
Bloom season - Late Spring, Early Summer
Leaf / Flower color - Green / Lavender, Blue Violet
Seed will benefit from a short cold moist stratification (30-60 days) to increase speed, uniformity and germination rate. Germination will improve with alternating temperatures of approx. 8 hours at +30C (86F) and 16 hours at +20C (68F).
Many growers use a fungicide during stratification. Other sterilization methods you can use include a 12 hour hydrogen-peroxide soak; surface sterilization with a 1:10 bleach:water mix, soaking the seed for 8 minutes then thoroughly washing off the bleach with warm water; a short diluted iodine soak.
1. Soak in water for 24 hours
2. Cold and moist stratify for 30-60 days
3. Sow seed 6 mm (1/4") deep, keep moist, mulch the seed bed, cover seedbed with some shade, can be sown outdoors in the fall for spring germination.
Stratified syringa seeds normally germinates in 14-60 days. Normally will only germinate with light.
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