The Q&A Archives: Lilac Blooms

Question: I have seen Lilacs in Kansas City area with 3 clusters of blooms on each individual branch. How can I achieve the same results? Also I was told that you need to pinch off the blooms as soon as they dry up, is that correct?

Answer: Common lilacs (Syringa vulgaris) generally produce two blooms on each branch. Hybrid lilacs such as Syringa villosa (Late Lilac) develop three blooms instead of the usual two. You can't induce your common lilac to produce three blooms on each branch, but you can add a hybrid to your landscape. Lilac's should be lightly pruned after flowering. Remove the spent blooms as soon as they wither, plus some of the stem to help shape the plant,and to allow the plant to develop new stems and flower buds for next year's blooms.

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