Lilac Bushes - Knowledgebase Question

Philadelphia, PA
Question by donnac23
June 2, 2007
Last year I planted a MME. Lemoine Lilac, which grew and bloomed this spring. I fed the plant with miracle grow spikes and added new mulch a few weeks ago and just noticed that the leaves on one side of the plant have become blackened and dried. I haven't seen this happen before and it did not happen to my other lilac plant. What do you think is the problem? Could it be overfed? If so what can I do to reverse it as I don't want the plant to die.

Answer from NGA
June 2, 2007


Although somewhat unusual, there are several different disease problems such as bacterial blight and verticillium that could cause symptoms similar to what you described. I would suggest you work with your Penn State county extension to obtain a specific diagnosis of the problem and based on knowing that, decide how to treat it.

I don't think the spikes would have caused this, however in general perhaps a more suitable fertilizer would be a spring top dressing with compost and then a general purpose granular or slow release granular fertilizer spread over the surface to provide a more evenly distributed dose of nutrients. You could try that next year.

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