Plant Family Guides: Syringa - Lilacs

 

Syringa vulgaris (Common Lilac)

Prized for its delightful fragrance, Syringa vulgaris (Common Lilac) is a mainstay of the spring landscape in northern and colder climates. Easy to grow, tough as nails, deer resistant and relatively free from major pests, Common Lilacs are one of the most effective flowering shrubs. Tailored to meet the needs of all gardens, this species counts 2000 cultivars.

Syringa x hyacinthiflora (Early Flowering Lilac)

Vigorous, Syringa x hyacinthiflora are early-flowering hybrids between Syringa oblata (Early Lilac) and Syringa vulgaris (Common Lilac). Exceptionally hardy, these terrific shrubs reward us with an abundance of exquisitely scented flowers in mid spring, about 7-10 days earlier than common lilacs. But this is not their only charm. Their foliage often colors up to shades of red, purple and gold in fall, extending their season of interest. As an added bonus, they are highly resistant to powdery mildew, unlike many other lilac varieties. Easy to grow, Hyacinth Lilacs are low-maintenance shrubs that will grow and flower profusely without much attention. They should be on every gardener’s list.

Pretty Lilacs for Small Gardens

A lilac in full bloom, with its heavenly fragrance, is a breathtaking sight. A mainstay of the spring landscape in northern and colder climates, lilacs are one of the most effective flowering shrubs. Easy to grow, tough as nails, deer resistant and relatively free from major pests, these hardy shrubs have been tailored to meet the needs of all gardens, including small gardens. There are now lilacs that rarely grow more than 3-4 ft. (90-120 cm) tall, which makes them suitable plants for small gardens and containers.

Wonderful Lilacs for the Upper South Region

Sadly, not all lilacs are suited to the heat of the south. They often need a long period of winter chill for buds to mature and bloom the following spring. However, some lilac varieties and cultivars bloom well in the Upper South Region.

Wonderful Lilacs for the Middle South Region

Sadly, not all lilacs are suited to the heat of the south. They often need a long period of winter chill for buds to mature and bloom the following spring. However, some lilac varieties and cultivars bloom well in the Middle South Region.

Wonderful Lilacs for the Lower South Region

Sadly, not all lilacs are suited to the heat of the south. They often need a long period of winter chill for buds to mature and bloom the following spring. However, some lilac varieties and cultivars bloom well in the Lower South Region.

Great Companion Plants For Your Lilacs

While extraordinarily good-looking on their own during their blooming season, Lilacs do not add much sparkle during the rest of the growing season. To extend their season of interest, they need companion plants that will provide color against the green foliage of the midsummer lilacs. Well-behaved, they make perfect partners with other shrubs or perennials and help create strikingly beautiful combinations in the garden.

Blooming Seasons of Lilacs

Depending on where you live, and the lilac varieties you choose, lilacs can provide color and fragrance from April through June. By selecting carefully, it is possible to have two months of spring blooms, particularly if the weather is cool.