Lilac Not Blooming?

I have a lilac that has blossomed once in the 12 years we have been here. It grows well every year and gets about 6ft high, but hasn't bloomed for 10 years. Any reasons or suggestions?


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June 21, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

Lilacs bloom on young wood. You should prune it back. It may affect blooming for a couple of years, but it will bloom again.

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June 22, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

My elementary school had dozens and dozens of lilac plants and I loved them. Sadly, at my current home, which less than a mile away from where my school once stood, I can't host one bush to save my soul.

While these are generally super low maintenance plants (they survived 40 plus years at an elementary school being tortured by kids), it is one plant where the dirt matters. They like nice loamy, rock free, and well drained soil and homes.


My yard...clumpy, clay/slate/rock filled dirt with bizarre and in some cases downright nasty drainage issues. So my first recommendation is to make sure your dirt is lilac friendly.

Mine failed because I didn't have the patience to till the soil in the beginning, remove the yuck (tiny tree roots and rocks, etc.) and mix in the right amount of compost. They didn't make it out of the first year.

Friends who have them do work their soil every spring to keep it loamy and to watch out for water ponding (and remove it) as lilacs don't like to get their roots saturated.

Learn from my mistakes...and with a little patience, if bad soil is your issue, you can get it up to speed and hopefully get the lilacs to bloom sweetly!

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June 21, 20180 found this helpful

When reading your question, I could not help but smile - I was just wondering why you waited all this time for your beautiful lilac to bloom and never asked the question before? I smiled because I have been guilty of almost the same thing - only with another type of plant..


  • I do know there are several reasons why your Lilac is not blooming but you will have to check each suggestion to see if any one of them fit your problem.
  • Many people tend to add "more" fertilizer when a plant is not blooming and many times (I have been told) that is the reverse of what is needed.
  • Lilac bushes that won't bloom could be the result of too much nitrogen. Because of this, you should not fertilize your lilacs. They do not need much in the way of nutrients, and fertilizing can cause a lilac to take up too much nitrogen, which keeps the lilac bush from blooming.
  • Planted in the wrong area where the bush does not receive enough sunshine can also be a problem as well as improper pruning or pruning at the wrong time.
  • Check out these sites for suggestions and maybe one "cause" will be your problem. Hope it is an easy one to fix.
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