The Q&A Archives: Hybrid double purple lilac bush

Question: We live in zone 11 and we have a double lilac that has been planted for about four years and has only produced about four or five blooms within the last two years. We also have a common lilac that is about three years old that is full of blooms why is there a difference is it the wrong climate zone for the double lilac and will it ever produce blooms like the common lilac does?

Answer: Your double purple is a French lilac and it has the same growing requirements as the species - they bloom best when they receive a pronounced winter chill; they like slightly alkaline, well draining soil and full sunshine. It should bloom prolifically, just as your common lilac does. Since lilacs bloom on new shoots which develop the previous year, you might try lightly pruning your French lilac now to encourage new growth. Over the summer it will develop flower buds for next spring's display. As long as it receives a winter chill, it should bloom for you. Best wishes with your landscape!

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