how to prune a lilac bush

The only right time to prune these shrubs is just after the last of the flowers fade away in late spring. A summer with extreme weather will yield fewer flowers. Your current lilac bush may have been grown on white lilac rootstock, instead of purple or lilac, which is why it’s growing mostly white flowers now. It is a smaller variety of lilac bush that will reach a height of 6 or 7 feet. Pruning lilac trees on a regular basis keeps them from becoming too tall and unmanageable. Prune your lilac bush when it is 6 to 8 feet (183 to 244 centimeters) tall. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden.   Start by taking out the thickest stems first. And like other lilac varieties, they also can benefit from deadheading.. The Miss Kim lilac is also called Miss Kim Manchurian lilac and Syringa pubescens. However, if left to grow and spread on their own, common lilacs will eventually only flower on the tops of the uppermost branches. Once the growing season has ended, remove any unsightly shoots. ... Prune lilacs to improve flowering in later years - As soon as the flowers fade. Who doesn’t enjoy the intense fragrance and beauty of lilacs? Finally, remove all of the remaining old wood in late winter of the third year. Learn tips for creating your most beautiful (and bountiful) garden ever. The general shrub pruning rule is to cut no more than a third of the stems each year. That will help the plant remain constantly vital, with new stems developing as old stems bloom. If you have shaped your lilac bush to have one main stem like a tree or prefer an alternative to the three year plan, do one severe pruning in late winter. When to Prune Lilac Bush. This allows new shoots plenty of time to develop the next season of blooms. The following spring, begin pruning out the spindly growth, and maintain the healthiest shoots while considering the shape of the plant. Cut back about a third of the branches. Thick lilac stems can be very tough. This means pruning just beyond buds that face away from the center of the plant. To prune your lilac bush, remove any small suckers near the base of the stems. This is usually in the spring. The alternate year, very few. After this, any necessary pruning should be done immediately after the flowering period is over. They are perennial plants that bloom in the spring, and start shedding-off flowers by the end of the season. Read our, Remove Any Stems Thicker Than Two Inches in Diameter, How to Prune Shrub Roses and Knock Out Roses, How to Grow and Care for Bloomerang® Lilac, 11 Great Fragrant Trees for Your Landscape, Tips for Growing the Common Lilac in Your Garden. Keep in mind that you may have to wait for flowers, as it takes about three years for them to develop once entire shrub has been cut. Older lilacs can have stems as thick as small trees and will flower only on the topmost branches. Grow new lilacs by taking semi-ripe cuttings - As soon as the flowers fade. Lilac bushes will typically flower without any effort from you. If you are pruning lilac trees or shrubs entirely to within inches of the ground, it is best to do so in early spring. Himalayan lilac has variegated leaves in fresh green with a darker green central splash; Syringa vulgaris ‘Lois Amee Utley’ – a large lilac with fragrant pink, double flowers. If you have to look up at a 20-foot lilac bush to see your blooms, then it’s time to prune it down – the right way. It is my experience that lilac bushes tend to bloom in cycles, every second year (in my climate) you get loads of blossoms. Prune with sharp gardening shears. 6 Thin the inside of the lilac, selecting branches that cross or are in areas that are too dense. Always cut at the base of a shoot rather than in the middle or near the end. Most lilacs don’t require pruning until they reach about six to eight feet (2-2.5 m.) tall. Pruning shears or loppers will generally handle these stems. These old-fashioned favorites are wonderful additions to nearly any landscape. Prune back one-third of the oldest branches as far as you can in winter. As with any plant, some years your lilac will bloom magnificently and some years not so much. However, periodic pruning is vital in order to keep lilacs healthy and looking their best. Use sharp gardening shears, and always clean your tools with a solutions of equal parts water and bleach t… With very large stems, a pruning saw might be necessary. Blooms are often dependent on the weather. The Japanese tree lilac (Syringa reticulata) is a plant that can grow as high as 25 feet and has become increasingly popular in urban environments. Begin by pruning dead or diseased stems, pencil-thin suckers, and twiggy growth. After three consecutive years of pruning your overgrown lilac in this way, new shoots should comprise the bulk of the plant. In general, by the time a stem reaches more than 2 inches in diameter, it should be pruned. When pruning lilacs, cutting back the tops of overgrown stems is oftentimes not enough. Although you'll be losing some flowers for the current year, pruning overgrown lilacs is easiest early in the spring before the branches leaf out. You are suppose to cut right it after bloom dies, because they flower on the new growth. Lilacs set next season's flower buds almost immediately, so late pruning will mean sacrificing the next year's flowers. Pruning early also gives new shoots more time and energy to develop, ensuring plenty of blooms for the following spring. But with lilacs, the only time deadheading seems to help them bloom better is during the first few years of growth. The less drastic approach to getting an overgrown lilac back into shape is to use the third rule. It is generally better to cut the entire stem. the Lilac has been neglected for years. Most flowering shrubs need regular pruning to keep them vibrant, and the common lilac (Syringa vulgaris) is no exception. Pruning lilac bushes is important for their health and flower production. Lilacs are generally pretty hardy and if proper pruning is performed, they will come back stronger than ever. This method encourages the bush to put out new growth. Sign up for our newsletter. The common lilac (Syringa vulgaris) is a very cold-hardy plant, but if a hard frost or a freeze comes along just as the flower buds are about to open, they can be damaged. Pruning lilacs too late can kill young developing buds. The contrast between your white lilacs and your purple lilacs will look beautiful in your yard, thought, so that’s definitely a positive! To renew these types of lilacs, cut back all the canes to within 6 to 8 inches from the ground. (05/13/2008) By Bonnie. Prune the Josee lilac on a weekly basis to remove all dead blooms which will encourage it to continue blooming. Learn how to prune lilac bushes with Blain’s Farm & Fleet. Oregon State University Extension, Pruning Lilacs and Other June Gardening Tips. It is generally better to cut the entire stem. This is the best time to prune them, to clear out old flowers, branches, and leaves. Remove dead or diseased branches, and prune back. They do not do well in full shade. Prune In Late Spring: You must have observed that the lilac bushes bloom only on old growth. That is why you are advised to prune lilac bushes right after they are done flowering (before they have set bud for next year). The lilac bushes are overgrown, and it is hard to get under them to get the plastic and the bark out. Grow lilac bushes in full sun. The following year (again in late winter), prune out one-half of the remaining old stems. New shoots will develop during the regular growing season as long as there are a few healthy shoots left. After that, you can prune them lightly or heavily. Also, thin out some of the new growth. On all varieties of lilac, the blooms sprout from old wood growth, not the spring's fresh shoots. 1:48. The best time to prune a lilac bush is right after the plant is done blooming for the year. Left on their stems, the flowers will die but continue sapping energy that could be spent on new growth. Check the bush throughout the year for dead or diseased branches. Lil… Prune a third of the oldest branches all the way to the ground each year for three consecutive years. Start by taking out the thickest stems first. Its important to know when to cut back your Lilacs, prune to late in the fall and you will loose the flower buds for next year. Lilacs bloom in the spring. The plant will begin to bloom all over, and you can do regular maintenance pruning from that point on. Don’t olivedes cut … Grasp the dead flower and cut it off 1 inch below the base using hand pruners.

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