Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
Why do lilacs do so well?
Rate This FAQ
Lilacs were planted by some of Utah's early settlers, not just for their beauty but also because of their ability to survive and adapt to most climates. The shrub's hardiness is evident at old vacant homes. Lilacs love it here. Even when ignored for several years, they continue to survive and bloom. Lilacs do best in neutral to alkaline soil.
Here are some tips about lilacs and their care.
* Lilacs are easily adapted to the landscape. They can be used as an informal hedge, specimen planting, background shrub and at times as a focal point. Lilacs come in a variety of sizes and colors. The old common purple or white lilac has been replaced with more exotic, interesting varieties.
* It is estimated that there are more than 800 different cultivars of lilacs. With so many available, it can be hard to select just one or two for the yard. One of my favorites is Charles Joly, which is a dark purplish-red color with a double blossom. Other purples include President Roosevelt, Ludwig Spaeth and Adelaide Dunbar.
* A popular white cultivar is Madame Lemoine. Pink has become more popular lately. Some of the better pink cultivars are Sweetheart, James MacFarlane and Lilac Sunday. Lilacs also come in blue, magenta, violet and even a creamy yellow color.
* Lilacs need a sunny location with a minimum of eight hours of sunlight per day. They can grow in more shady locations, but the bloom production decreases. They like a well-drained soil but can adapt to most soils if not over-watered.
* Fertilize the plants every spring with an all-purpose fertilizer. They like deep, infrequent watering. If possible, keep water off the flowers when they are setting bud and in bloom. Mulch around the base of the plants to keep the moisture at a consistent level and reduce weeds.
* Lilac flowers are produced during the summer, winter over and emerge in the spring. This is why lilacs should be pruned after flowering. If they are pruned early in the spring the flowers are removed and the shrub loses a year of blossoms.
* Lilacs are easy to prune. Simply remove one-third of the older canes right at the base. Doing this every year helps the plant keep its shape and maintain a height of about 6 to 8 feet. Do not top a lilac bush. This causes excess branching at the top, and the plant really starts to look shabby and unnatural.
* If the plant has not been pruned for many years and appears to be taking over the neighborhood, more of the older canes should be removed. This stimulates new growth from the base. Over a three- to four-year period the older canes can all be removed and the newer canes will replace them. This lowers the overall height of the shrub and opens up the center of the plant, allowing better air movement and more comfort for the plant.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- My front yard has large patches of dead grass. Originally I thought it might be a result of grubs, but dug down and didn't see any larvae or grub worms. The condition is worsening and now I've noticed pencil-eraser size holes throughout the dry areas. Do you know what this is and how to prevent or stop it?
- How do I get rid of wild morning glory?
- Will hydrangias and dogwood trees grow in South Jordan?
- When is the best time to seed native grasses such as streambank and western wheatgrass into an existing Kentucky Bluegrass lawn? Some of what I've read leads me to believe that it would be best to seed in late fall so the seed will germinate in the spring. But I wonder if it would be better to seed in early fall after stressing the KBG. I will also be seeding sheep fescue, but I've seen conflicting information on whether that is native or introduced. My goal is to have a lawn that can survive with no water, and stay green with very little water.
- We live in West Jordan in an area with very clay soil. We would like to plant some low-lying evergreen shrubs in a narrow strip between our RV pad and a short vinyl fence. Do you have any plant recommendations that will work in our soil and don't require a lot of maintenence?
- We have a lot of scrub oak around our home. In some spots we have some ground cover and other area are bare. We would like to add a nice ground cover to mix in with the oak in these bare areas. Do you have suggestions for ground cover? Also, in one particular area, we have a large amount of grass growing in the ground cover surrounding the scrub oak. What is the best way to get rid of this grass? Is there a ground cover that can overtake the grass?
- I am actually in Colorado, I am interested in the zone(s) in Eden. I am designing a landscape there and want to plant accordingly. I, also, am interested in a list of noxious plants, I'd like to avoid them. Thank You!
- There are yellow jackets in my yard, how do I control them?