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Lilacs – Try White for Something Extraordinary for the Flower Border

Unless you already have a lot of experience and knowledge about shrubs and trees — choosing them for borders, especially relatively small borders like mine, can be one of the most difficult parts of flower border design.

If you want something easy but extraordinary for the flower border— choose an elegant white lilac.

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Good air circulation will be important because lilacs can be prone to powdery mildew in the summer.  Its other needs are sun (at least 6 hours a day), good drainage, and soil with a good amount of organic matter. (Since I keep my borders mulched, the soil in the area of the tree gets organic matter from the decaying straw mulch.)

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My white lilac in the fence border is close to the back door where I work on wintersown seed starting. I really enjoy it during bloom time.

About 8 years ago I decided to try a white lilac in my narrow fence border in the front and in the wider border at the back of property.  I didn’t want to wait 4 or 5 years for bloom, so rather than growing from seed, I ordered  year old shrubs.  They were only about 1 1/2 feet tall, but didn’t take all that long to grow.  I got one bloom the second spring after planting and lots of bloom the following year.

I keep mine pruned to look like a small multi-branched trees and I love them! Bloom only lasts for two weeks in April, but they’re the highlight of the borders during that time.  Not only are the blooms gorgeous but the smell is wonderful.

This one is in the back border next to a favorite little pine tree.

This one is in the back border next to a favorite little pine tree.

You don’t have to prune annually unless you want to keep it small. It does, however, help to cut off blooms within a week after blooming to help the plant concentrate on making more flower buds for next year rather than seed.

If you intend to keep it short, remember that they bloom on old wood, so prune right after bloom.  Otherwise, you may loose some of next year’s bloom.

These spectacular shrubs are easy to grow. Try planting one close to the house where you can enjoy it everyday — especially during bloom time.

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Related Post and More Pictures:

White Lilac – Adding to Garden Enjoyment

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2 comments to Lilacs – Try White for Something Extraordinary for the Flower Border

  • GardenDmpls

    I got some Bloomerang rebloomers for a few dollars each last year, placed on the markdown shelf because they had a few dried leaves. They are covered in blooms this spring. I love lilacs, but not the once a year bloom. I will see if these live up to their reblooming reputation.

  • Theresa

    Can hardly wait to hear the end result, GardenDmpls.

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