Answer: Although extremely adaptable to a wide range of conditions, lilacs do best in a soil that is near neutral in pH and has been amended with ample organic matter such as compost or old rotted leaves or aged stable manure and bedding. The plants appreciate a top dressing of well aged manure and/or compost and/or a complete fertilizer according to the label instructions in early spring and again right after they bloom. Deadheading, or removing the spent flowers, can also help maintain the shrub's vigor. Newly planted shrubs in particular will need several inches of organic mulch and careful watering to assure that the soil is moist yet not soggy. Watering is best achieved by watering deeply but less often, rather than by a daily light sprinkling. Enjoy your new lilac!
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