When Do Lilacs Bloom In Upstate Ny

Visit Oxford Street in Rochester to observe the magnolia trees in blossom. (May 7, 2018)

The fourth National Climate Assessment, produced by hundreds of scientists and other experts and released the day after Thanksgiving, provided a fairly frightening vision of our future.

Since the turn of the 20th century, the annual average temperature in New York and other Northeastern states has increased by at least 2 degrees. According to the assessment, the earth will be 4 to 5 degrees warmer than it was in 1901 by the middle of this century.

As a result, communities along the coast will be uprooted, urban air quality will deteriorate, and heavy downpours like those that caused flooding in locations like Penn Yan, Yates County, Seneca Lake, and Lake Ontario will happen more frequently.

And there’s more. The shift in the seasonality of this region of the country—the cycle of winter, spring, fall, and winter around which our lives revolve—is one of the most significant changes.

The Northeast has hotter summers, which will only get hotter. Spring is arriving early, and winters are getting shorter.

Research demonstrating that indicator species like honeysuckle and lilacs are flowering earlier was a crucial piece of evidence used in the climate assessment.

Lilacs? Since Rochester is home to one of the largest and most renowned Syringa collections in the world, we have a lot of knowledge about lilacs.

Furthermore, it is among the oldest collections. Since more than a century ago, the peak blooming time of the lilacs in Highland Park has been noted. The new information was recently shared with us by the staff at Monroe County Parks.

That is, as these things go, an older data collection than the one used in the climate assessment.

We have earlier peaking lilacs. The peak blooming period often fell in the latter part of May in the early 20th century. The date fell in the first week of June on five separate occasions between 1905 and 1925.

Our lilacs now often reach their best in mid-May. It has occurred in the first week of May three times in the past ten years.

The peak bloom date is about 12 days earlier today than it was in 1905, according to the trend line, which eliminates year-to-year variability.

This development is some tangible proof that our climate has been changing right before our eyes, and it closely aligns with the lilac research mentioned in the climate assessment.

further observations from the evaluation

  • Bad and good. Songbirds that migrate make an earlier comeback than they once did due to earlier springs. However, they can also stimulate the emergence, spread, and destructiveness of pest insects like emerald ash borers and hemlock woolly adelgid. They could increase the white-tailed deer population, which is already overabundant in some areas.
  • further good and evil. A prolonged growth season is provided by early springs. It’s wonderful that more tree growth in forests is assisting in the sequestration (capture) of more atmospheric carbon. The risk of late hard freezes and damage to budded plants is increased with earlier springs, though. Fruit plants are particularly at risk.
  • Heavy rains and crop production. It is apparent that a prolonged growing season will be advantageous for agriculture, a significant industry in upstate New York. Farmers will be hindered by the rise in rainfall intensity and frequency. Increased overnight temperatures may have an impact on flowering.
  • Warm cows. Due to the warmer weather, the dairy industry may experience some production losses. Farmers may have to work harder and spend more money if weeds grow well.
  • Fall hues? Less is known about how warmer temperatures affect senescence, or the shift in leaf color.
  • less severe winters. They are present and won’t leave. There will be less snow on the ground each day, and more winter precipitation will fall as rain rather than snow. This pattern is clear to see.
  • Some find it a boon, others don’t. Milder winters will be a blessing for those who detest shoveling snow and driving in it, but a curse for those who enjoy snowmobiling, skiing, and other cold-weather outdoor activities. Skiers will have to go further north to find suitable slopes since southern ski resorts would struggle to make artificial snow.
  • city stress. Many urban dwellers will experience a decline in quality of life as the climate continues to warm. The worst offender will be those who cannot afford air conditioning. The air quality, which had been becoming better everywhere, would deteriorate. A hotter climate will result in more air pollution. Ground-level ozone is produced by heat and sunlight, and this will be a problem for small children, the elderly, those who are economically disadvantaged, as well as those who have asthma and other health issues. The number of deaths caused by ozone will rise.
  • invasion by insects As temperatures rise, disease-carrying insects like ticks and mosquitoes will proliferate. Unwanted mosquito species that can’t now survive the harsh winters in upstate New York could perhaps spread to this region of the state. Diseases that were long thought to be tropical, like dengue, yellow fever, and chikungunya fever, could reappear.

When do the lilacs in New York bloom?

The Osborne Garden’s historic collection of lilacs, which dates back to 1914, is represented in the recently relocated Lilac Collection, which is placed along an accessible meandering path between the Osborne Garden and the Cranford Rose Garden.

Beginning with species that date back before 1880 and including those that were bred by French nurseryman Victor Lemoine in the early 20th century, the lilacs are shown in chronological groups based on when they were originally bred or documented in scientific literature. There are also more recent cultivars, such as smaller types created for backyard gardens. People of all abilities can access the new design, which was finished in 2019, along a soft, sloped route.

In general, fragrant blossoms in single and double forms, in the colors white, violet, bluish, lilac, pinkish, magenta, and purple, start to bloom in late April and peak around Mother’s Day. Lilacs that blossom late keep blooming till the end of May.

When do lilacs flower?

Did you know that the National Gardening Bureau has designated 2022 as the “Year of the Lilac”? They have a sweet, eerie aroma and are among the easiest shrubs for your landscaping to maintain that bloom in the spring. Find out how to plant, nurture, and prune your lilacs.

About Lilacs

Syringa vulgaris, or common lilac, is prized for its tenacity, dependability, and scent. Lilacs are so hardy that they can live for more than 100 years and frequently outlive the houses they were planted near.

This tiny, multi-stemmed deciduous shrub (or tree) has approximately ten canes and blooms at eye level. The height of a common lilac can range from 8 to 12 feet, depending on the cultivar. The aromatic flowers attract butterflies and make good cuttings.

There are lilac types that come in white, cream, and even pink and yellow, though the blooms are typically lilac/purple in hue (ranging from very pale to extremely dark). Flowers can be solitary or double in number.

Lilacs bloom in northern states from mid- to late spring for around two weeks. However, there are lilac varieties for early, mid, and late seasons that, when cultivated together, guarantee a consistent bloom for at least six weeks.

Lilacs do best in soil that is fertile, humus-rich, well-drained, and neutral to alkaline (at a pH near 7.0). Add compost to your soil to improve it if it is in bad condition. (Learn more about adding amendments to the soil and getting it ready for planting.) Lilacs don’t enjoy having their feet wet and won’t blossom if they are kept too moist, so make sure the planting area drains well.

Lilacs should be planted in full sun, which is defined as having at least six hours of sunlight each day, for the finest blooms.

How to Plant Lilacs

  • If you’re fortunate, a friend may offer you a sucker, or offshoot, of the plant’s root system. The sucker will first appear pitiful, but all you need to do is dig a hole, fill it with soil, and then insert the sucker. water next, and then wait. You’ll be rewarded with enormous, fragrant blossoms in 4 or 5 years.
  • Lilacs purchased from nurseries can also be planted easily. If the plant was cultivated in a container, spread its roots out as you plant it; if it was balled or burlapped, gently remove the covering and any rope before doing so. Set the plant 2 to 3 inches deeper than it was while it was growing in the nursery and cover the roots with topsoil. in water Then add more topsoil to the hole to finish it.
  • Depending on the kind, place multiple lilac bushes 5 to 15 feet apart.
  • Apply a layer of compost under the plant each spring, followed by a layer of mulch to keep moisture in and weeds under control.
  • If the weekly rainfall is less than 1 inch, water during the summer.
  • If lilacs receive too much fertilizer, they won’t bloom. In the late winter, they can manage a few 10-10-10, but no more.
  • Spread some lime and thoroughly composted manure around the base of your lilac bush once it has finished blooming. Remove suckers while you form the shrub by trimming it.

Pruning Lilacs

  • Since lilacs blossom on old wood, it’s important to prune in the spring immediately following their bloom. You risk removing the wood if you prune later in the summer. A word of advice: It’s time to prune if your lilac flower clusters are getting smaller!
  • After bloom each year, cut away any dead wood. Remove the oldest canes by pruning (down to the ground). Take out the tiny suckers. Reduce weak branches until a robust shoot remains. Reduce tall canes to eye level.
  • Remove one-third of the oldest canes (down to the ground) in year one, half of the remaining old wood in year two, and the remainder in year three if your lilac is very old and in poor condition. Cutting the entire plant back to a height of approximately 6 or 8 inches is another option for elderly lilacs. Although it sounds dramatic, lilacs are remarkably resilient. This option’s drawback is that it takes some time for the hair to grow back. The lilac will grow back bursting with blooms, so there will be less work and more reward.
  • It is important to understand that extreme trimming causes bloom loss for one to three years. For these reasons, a smart pruning program gives the bushes yearly attention in an effort to avoid making dramatic and severe cuts.

The Syringa vulgaris kind of lilacs is the most widely grown and fragrant:

  • Try the double magneta variety “Charles Joly” for an early bloom.
  • Lilacs in the middle of the season include “Monge,” a deep reddish purple, and “Firmament,” a delicate blue.
  • Miss Canada, a reddish pink, and Donald Wyman, a solitary purple, are two late-season beauties.

Syringa x hyacinthiflora, an early-flowering lilac cultivar, opens 7 to 19 days before those of the common lilac. Hummingbirds and butterflies are attracted to its fragrant blossoms.

The cutleaf lilac, a fragrant pale lavender, is one of the common lilacs that may flourish as far south as Zone 9. Common lilacs appreciate cold weather. The beautiful shrub Syringa patula ‘Miss Kim’ has light lilac-blue flowers that eventually become white.

There are tiny kinds for gardeners who simply don’t have the space for the conventional larger lilacs, particularly those in urban settings. Even in a container on your balcony or patio, they will grow.

  • ‘Baby Kim’ has a lovely rounded shape, only grows 2 to 3 feet high (and 3 feet wide), and has purple flowers that draw butterflies. Hardiness from Zones 3 to 8 extended.
  • Compact lilac ‘Little Lady’ (Syringa x) has dark pink buds that open to lilac-pink flowers and grows to be 4 to 5 feet tall and wide at maturity. Zones 2 to 7 are tough.
  • Syringa vulgaris cultivars “New Age Lavender” and “New Age White” were developed for mildew resistance and are quite compact, growing from 4 to 5 feet tall and wide. Hummingbirds and butterflies are drawn to their fragrant blossoms. Zone 4 hardy.

Lilacs can they grow in New York?

Before the lilacs, Christina Blackwell, 1930, on the left Highland Park in 1930, with Lilac Queen and an unidentified woman

Local History The tulip industry dominates the Netherlands. Another kind of flower that is popular in Rochester, New York is the lilac.

In Highland Park, there are more than 1,200 lilac bushes and more than 500 different types of lilacs. Highland Park was given to the people of Rochester in 1888 by the biggest nursery in the world, Ellwanger & Barry, which was run by George Ellwanger and Patrick Barry. It was the first municipal arboretum in the United States and had lovely landscaping with trees and shrubs. A unique growing and cultivation area for trees, shrubs, and plants is called an arboretum. Twenty different lilac cultivars were included in the park’s initial lilac collection in 1892. Every May in Rochester, there has been a lilac festival since 1898. More than 500,000 people now come to see the lilacs and other flowering trees and shrubs, compared to the first event’s 3,000 attendees.

Lilacs are little plants and shrubs that bloom in the early spring. They feature deep green leaves and big oval clusters of tiny blooms. The flowers, which might be lavender, deep purple, white, or pink, are fragrant. Early European settlers carried lilacs to North America from their native Eastern Europe and Asia. Lilacs from the Balkan Mountains in Eastern Europe were the ancestors of some of the original trees planted in Highland Park.

How often does a lilac flower bloom each year?

The late lilac is the leading contender for a long-lasting lilac that will bloom profusely throughout the warmer months of the year (Syringa villosa). As its name suggests, it blooms later than other types and produces fragrant white, pink, rosy lilac, violet, and even crimson blossoms. This lilac bush only has one summer bloom and enjoys direct sunlight.

Consider a reblooming lilac for your garden if you want consistent flowers. Lilacs that rebloom will first bloom in the spring, then rest until summertime when they will blossom once more. After their spring rest, certain types, such as the Bloomerang dark purple, will continue to bloom until the fall. Look for the Josee reblooming lilac (Syringa Josee), which intermittently flowers throughout the summer and into the fall, if you live in a warmer climate.

Rochester, New York, lilacs in bloom?

After two years of COVID limitations, Rochester’s Lilac Festival is now again in full bloom. Highland Park is starting to see lilac blooms. Next weekend, just in time for the Lilac Festival, is when they are anticipated to be at their optimum.

Lilacs bloom twice a year, right?

Compared to other lilac trees, bloomerang lilac trees are more compact, reaching a short height of 4-6 feet tall and a spread of 4-6 feet, giving them a pleasing, rounded appearance. Their long, arched branches bear their veined leaves, which are bright green for the majority of the year until turning yellow in the fall.

The characteristic 4-petaled, 4-6 inch deep lilac-purple blooms on bloomerang lilac trees appear starting in May, cease blooming in June, and then return in July through the first frost of the year.


With tall, arched branches, a compact and rounded shape, and rich green foliage that turn golden in the fall. Four spread petals, 4-6 inch, lilac-purple flowers that bloom in the spring and later in the summer.