Why doesn’t the lilac bloom?

It is one of the traditional garden plants, both for its ease of cultivation and for its spectacular appearance during spring. For this reason, it is more than usual to ask why the lilac does not bloom. A recurring and perfectly logical doubt, since being able to enjoy its display of color and aroma is the main reward of this incredible deciduous plant that dresses in color with good weather.

The lilac is one of the most demanded flowering shrubs, precisely because of its flowering. A claim that not only draws the attention of humans but is also essential if we consider an even more sustainable green space. Both for the color of its flowers and for its perfume, it is one of the plants that we will have to contemplate if we wonder how to attract pollinating insects to the garden. A small and simple gesture that, however, can have a positive impact on our closest ecosystem and add a very unique note of color to our space. Why do we say this? Because, aside from the others, if there are some insects that feel absolute devotion to the lilac, those are the butterflies.. Some wonderful visitors that, in a natural way, will add a note of color to our garden.

So let’s see why the lilac does not bloom or, rather, what it needs to be able to do so properly. A gift of nature that is extremely difficult to give up.


On many occasions, we worry about why the lilac does not bloom before its time. It should be noted that, in general terms, it is an early flowering shrub, the time of which depends largely on the variety of lilac that we have. And it is not nonsense: there are more than 30, so before worrying, it is important to know what the particular characteristics of ours are.

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In general terms and regardless of both the variety and the weather, the lilac flowers between the months of April and June. Although its flowering is long-lasting, it will start to deteriorate as temperatures rise. Although its color disappears, the leaves will continue to accompany us until autumn.


On many occasions, the flowering season has passed without the plant being filled with them. A reason for us to ask ourselves why the lilac does not bloom and, more importantly, try to find a solution. It is true that we will have to wait for the arrival of next spring to see if it blooms or not, but it is interesting to know the main reasons why it does not.

1. It is a too young plant

The first question is to understand the term youth applied to our plant. Like when we wonder when the rhododendron blooms, it can take three to four years for the lilac to flower for the first time. A period during which our plant needs to settle down, take root and acclimatize in order to flourish.

If this is our case, we only have one remedy left: be very patient. Only time will allow us to enjoy its flowers.

2. It has not had the cold it needs, one of the main reasons why the lilac does not bloom

One of the most striking things in lilac care is knowing that it needs both heat and cold. Only if it is exposed to low temperatures will it be able to prepare its flowering for when the thermometer begins to rise.

If we live in a climate with too mild winters or even if the cold months have not been as such; the lilac does not bloom. Given that, we can only hope that, next year, our plant has the cold it needs.

3. We have pruned it aggressively or improperly

One of the most common reasons why the lilac does not bloom. Sometimes we get carried away with how we tend to prune bushes without taking into account the specific needs of the lilac. The main consequence is that, with the arrival of spring, our plant will not bloom and we will not understand why.

As well. Several aspects must be taken into account. For one thing, lilac hardly needs any pruning. Being purists, the ideal is to only cut the flower clusters once flowering has passed. If we opt for a more aggressive pruning, it is essential to know that flowering depends mainly on the branches. Therefore, if we mainly eliminate the oldest branches, we will be reducing or avoiding the flowering of the following year.

4. It is planted in a space that is too shady

Another peculiarity of lilac is that it can live in full sun but also planted in semi-shade. But let’s have something clear: living is not necessarily flourishing. If our shrub is planted in a space that is too shady, it is more than likely that it will never flower.

As minimal as it may be, light is key to the flower. And, the greater your exposure, the greater your bloom.

5. We have not fertilized it correctly, the last reason why the lilac does not bloom

The last of the care that we will have to review when considering why the lilac does not bloom. In order to unfold the beauty of its flowers, this wonderful shrub needs two very specific types of fertilizer throughout the year.

Opting for a slow-release fertilizer will allow us to keep our lilac nourished during the flowering months. Discover its features

Although the fertilization with autumn organic fertilizer is important, the really essential one is the spring one. One that we must carry out regularly during the flowering months, and always using a mineral fertilizer.

If this year does not bloom, be patient. The magic of lilac is that it will do so when it is ready. Perhaps that is why we enjoy its wonderful flowers so much.

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