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Lilac Tree Care and Propagation

The Lilac Tree (Syringa) is a fully hardy deciduous small tree. It's claim to fame is the mass of flowers it produces in mid to late Spring. Most of the flowers have a delicious scent - powerful but not over-powering. The majority of lilac trees have dark green leaves.

Once established, the Lilac Tree requires little care and rarely suffers from pests and disease.

They prefer a full sun position on a reasonably fertile soil. Their preference is for a chalky clay soil but they will tolerate most soils except those which are acidic. Easy to grow, this is a largish shrub for the expert and amateur gardener.

Key Lilac Tree Facts

Botanical Name Syringa

Common Name Lilac tree

Type Deciduous spring flowering shrub

(after 5 years)
After 10 years
4.5m x 3m
15ft x 10ft

Position Full sun but tolerates partial shade.

Soil Best in chalky clay, but OK in most non-acidic soils.

Hardy Very

Flower Several colours, lilac, white, pink

Foliage Dark green

Scent Yes - delicious

Season of
Mid to late spring

Propagate Semi-ripe cuttings in late July, click here for semi-ripe cutting article.

Lilac Trees thrive in town gardens and are normally grown as specimen or border plants. They originate from East Asia and South East Europe. The picture above is of the Lilac Tree Syringa vulgaris.

Name: jim@GardenAction
E-mail: Private
Date posted: October 23, 2011 - 04:57 am
Message: Hello

You must have confused us with a garden centre.

Name: Muriel Maufroy
Date posted: October 21, 2011 - 09:59 am
Message: I looked at so many plants that I cannot remember if I ordered a Mme Lemoine Lilac tree at �34.99. I don't know how to check but would like to place the order. My new post code is now CH5 3NN

Name: Sandra Smith
Date posted: August 14, 2011 - 05:46 am
Message: I planted a lilac some two years ago and have never had blooms. What am I doing wrong? The leaves are green and healthy looking though.

Name: Joy Anderson
E-mail: Private
Date posted: July 07, 2011 - 02:22 pm
Message: May I ask you can lilac trees withstand -12-18% of frost in winter. I would love to plant one in our garden but am rather frightened it could die! Many thanks

Name: stewart
E-mail: Private
Date posted: June 08, 2011 - 09:36 am
Message: I have two lilac bushes in my garden. One has now in all effect died- the leves have withered and are about to drop. The other is two metres further up the same bed, and is fine. I've looked at soil pH etc and all seems OK Help!

Name: Julie Mace
Date posted: June 02, 2011 - 04:13 pm
Message: Our syringa vulgaris has started to suffer with split bark on most parts of the shrub and the leaves are now turning yellow/brown. Can you give me some advice on how to rectify this please?

Name: Linda
E-mail: Private
Date posted: June 02, 2011 - 02:17 pm
Message: My purple lilac bush is all white this year. Does anyone know how this happened?
Thank you

Name: Tina Gabriel
Date posted: May 25, 2011 - 09:51 am
Message: I don't have any advice I need advice! I have a lilac bush that will not flower! I got it 4 years ago and it flowered the first year and has not flowered since. I did what the gardening book said and cut 75% of the flowers off. I got it from a garden centre and it had no flowers when we planted it so I figured they removed the flowers that first year as you are supposed to cut 100% of them off. The next year it flowered and I cut 75% off. Then last year and this year nothing! What can I do???
Tina Gabriel

Name: Mary Modic
E-mail: Private
Date posted: May 16, 2011 - 11:24 am
Message: I have two Lilac trees. How can I get them to blooms on them. I only get three blooms on both of them. Please help.

Name: Frances
E-mail: Private
Date posted: May 14, 2011 - 05:21 pm
Message: I planted a miniature lilac which flowered the first year, I cut off the dead heads when finished flowering, and now in the second year - no flowers at all!
Help< what's gone wrong?

Name: Les
E-mail: Private
Date posted: May 08, 2011 - 02:36 am
Message: I have three mature (5-8yrs old) lilac trees in the garden which I would like to move... is this possible and if so when and how is the best way to achieve this

Name: Sandra Smith
Date posted: May 06, 2011 - 09:18 am
Message: I planted my lilac tree some three years ago and have still not had any blooms. What am I doing wrong?