Lilac Tree question


Old 04-28-02, 06:31 AM
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Question Lilac Tree question

I have a small offspring from a large lilac tree that has been transplanted twice. The first time it was transplanted from the original tree[in 1999] it did well. I had to move it in the spring of 2000, and it did ok for a while, but began to die off by the end of the summer. Last year it began to bud in the spring, but stopped and remained brown all season. This year the tree still looks dead. It is dry and brittle, but there is one branch about a foot long at the base of the tree that that is nice and green and full of leaves. This tree is about 4 feet tall, the living branch is about 2 inches from the ground. Should I prune off the dead part of the tree? If so, how far down, and when? Or would it be better to just leave it alone? THANKS!
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Old 04-29-02, 07:22 AM
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Hi Mindy,

You could show us a pic on Sierra. Or can you send me a photo through email.

I want to say cut off the dead wood, but I'd rather see a pic first.

Old 04-30-02, 07:57 AM
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I can only reply from experience. My lilacs were doing nothing. The leaves were curling up, I had no flowers at all. After many questions such as yours and many answers, it all ended up with me trimming, trimming, trimming! I cut off most of my bushes 2 years ago, the same with my forsythia bushes. Now my lilacs have doubled in size, the leaves still curl a little bit, not much and I have more flowers than I've ever had before. Everyone also said to cut off the suckers, I kept them because that was the only new growth I was getting! Besides I want them full at the bottom too.

Hope that helps!

Old 05-03-02, 04:52 PM
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Lilacs can get fussy when moved and sulk for a year or two. I had a similar problem. Prune each branch that you think is dead by cutting off an inch or so. If there's no green under the bark then it's dead. If dead, prune to the ground. Lilacs also like a more alkaline soil. If your soil is acid, add some lime around the shrub and scratch in. Mulch well and water deeply if you don't get an inch of rain a week. Give it a couple of years to rebound. Been there, done that!


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