Landscaping & Nursery Information for Home Gardeners


Lilac blooms are susceptible to cold injury. The best blooms are from stems between two and four years of age.

To use blooms indoors, strip foliage off all limbs and pound stems. Place in a container of warm water. Add floral preservative, a cup of clear soda, or a mixture of one teaspoon of bleach and teaspoon of sugar.


Lilac should be pruned after blooming each spring. Remove one-fourth (1/4) of the plant starting the fifth year after planting to encourage new basal shoots. Remove old wood at ground level. Never cut the entire plant back by one-fourth (1/4) across the top.

Pruning encourages better flowering and reduces insect problems such as lilac borers which attack thicker, older wood.

Pruning also allows for better air circulation, limiting the amount of powdery mildew.

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