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shade removal and blooming

Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:55 pm
by Turtle
I am beyond a newbie at gardening. You could go so far as to say I am a plant killer! :cry: I have a desire for a beautiful landscaped yard, with trees, shrubs, plants...the works. But I'm having a hard enough time with the lawn! Anyway, I have these lilac bushes, 10 feet tall. Been there long before we moved in. From reading websites, the shade from some trees that infiltrated the lilacs, are causing them not to bloom as much. So I've taken to pruning the trees and will remove a few of them. My question is will I see more blooms this year? Will they bloom more next year? And will the lilacs fill in the spaces where the trees were, without any help from me? My "brown thumb" is Mom killed a plastic plant! They melt when put over a heater! Thanks for any help.

Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2006 11:51 am
by Newt
Hi Turtle,

I doubt you will see any blooms this year. Lilacs set buds two weeks after the finish of bloom, so they will be sparse again next year. You should see a few more blooms next year and then even more the year after. Since you've done some reading already you probably already know not to fertilize with a high nitrogen fertilizer as that will add to leafy growth at the expense of flowers. If the lilacs are in the lawn or near the lawn be careful when fertilizing your lawn so as not to get the fertilizer near the lilacs.

You probably know that lilacs prefer a more alkaline soil, so you could sprinkle a cup of lime around the base of each plant. Topdressing with an inch of compost will be helpful too.