My Lilac bush will not blossom. It is two years old and had good blossoms when planted. Can you help? Thank you. Mary
Several things could be going on. Lilacs need fertilization and pruning at very specific times of year. When you fertilize, use a slow release, organic fertilizer like Flowertone at the end of March only (1x/year) to provide the nutrients needed to produce flowers.
When you prune, do it right after the lilac blooms; never in the fall. If you prune in the fall, the flower buds will be cut off for the following spring.
Make sure the mulch is not piled up onto the stem of the shrub which smothers and stresses the plant. Stressed plants will not put their energy into making flowers. Also, make sure there is a mulch ring around the base of the plant which will keep lawn and weeds away from the roots of the shrub and will also keep the soil cool and moist.
It takes 3-5 years for a shrub to be established. Established means there are enough roots below ground to support the above ground leaves and stems of the shrub. A plant will not flower very much if it is not fully established. It takes a lot of energy to make flowers. In the first years of growth, It may put out one or two flowers but most of the energy will go towards growing roots.
The shrub needs to be watered during the establishment period especially during the summer when there is not a lot of rainfall. Once the plant is established, watering is not necessary.
Once the plant has a robust root system to support the plant, it will start to produce flowers. Good Luck.
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About Linda Lillie
Linda K. Lillie is the President of Sprigs & Twigs, Inc, the premier
landscape design and maintenance, tree care, lawn care, stonework, and carpentry
service provider in southeastern Connecticut since 1997. She is a graduate of
Connecticut College in Botany, a Connecticut Master Gardener and a national
award winning landscape designer for her landscape design and landscape installation work.