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Why Won't My Lilacs Bloom?

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Question: Why Won't My Lilacs Bloom?
"Why aren't my lilacs blooming" is a cry heard far and wide. Yes, lilacs often infuriate people, because they are so slow to bloom. You have to be really patient with them, and, yes, they are worth the wait....
Answer:

The general advice for inducing plants to bloom is to apply phosphorus to the soil. But there is another "trick" you can try to speed up flowering on lilacs:

  1. Fill a bucket with a gallon of water, and stir 2 oz. of Epsom salts into it.
  2. Then pour this solution onto your lilacs when they are in a period of dormancy (which occurs from late fall to early spring).

But mainly, you just have to wait. I waited 5 years for a "sucker" to bloom that I transplanted from an old stand of lilacs. At the end of the 5-year wait, I was finally rewarded with blooms, without doing anything specific to get it to bloom -- I just waited.

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