vulgaris “Charles Joly”
Known as- Common lilac
Grow Zone - 3 to 7
Type- Deciduous shrub
Smith Scl. hardy? No
ht.- 8 to 15 ft.
Span- 6 to 12 ft.
Coloring- Reddish purple double
Shade/Light- Full sun
Moisture- Medium dampure
Hi/Lo Maint- Low
Easily grown in average, moderate wet, well-drained soil in full sun.
Tolerates light shade, but best bloom is in full sun. Prefers rich, damp,
neutral soils. Needs good air circulation. Prompt removal of faded flower
panicles before seed set will increase bloom in the following year. Prune
immediately after flowering.
This common lilac cultivar is an upright, deciduous shrub which grows
8-15” tall. Deep reddish-purple, sweetly fragrant, double flowers
are arranged in dense, pyramidal, terminal clusters (panicles) which cover
this shrub in late April to early May (St. Louis). Ovate to cordate, dark
green leaves (to 5’ long). Excellent fresh cut flower. Lilacs have
been a garden favorite for years and often evoke nostalgic feelings of
home and childhood. Walt Whitman lyrically extolled the lilac as ‘tall-growing
with heart-shaped leaves of rich green, With many a pointed blossom rising
delicate, with the perfume strong I love, With every leaf a miracle...’
in his 1865 poem ‘When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom”d’.
Powdery mildew is a frequent, unsightly, though not necessarily life-threatening
problem in summer, particularly in areas with high summer humidity. Lilacs
are also susceptible to a number of other diseases including blights,
leaf spots, wilt and certain viruses. Lilacs are visited by a number of
insect pests including borers, leaf miners and scale. Young leaves are
particularly suspect to frost injury in spring.
Though spectacular when in full bloom, lilacs
are otherwise a rather ordinary shrub. Effective
as a specimen or massed, or may be grown as
a privacy screen or hedge.
Good for shrub borders.