All they ask of you is full sun, fertile soil, water, and a little TLC in the way of pruning every year. These shrubs grow best in Sunset's Climate Zones 1 to 11 and 14, but some cultivars will bloom in the warmer Zones 18 to 22. Take your pruning shears and cut the branch approximately at ground level, away from the Mother Plant. Could it have been a cat using soft soil as it%26#039;s littler box? They are also versatile shrubs, filling in as border plants, specimen ornamentals or as part of flowering hedges. If you have a problem with lilacs that have grown too large or you simply want to remove dead lilacs, you can remove the roots and trunks yourself. They can be found as bare rootstock or in pots at many nurseries. Push the spade toward the tree, creating a V-shaped trench. Dig up a lilac shoot from somewhere around the main bush. Dig the trench at least 3 feet from the bush stump. They were far to big to dig up … If you're planting multiple lilac shrubs, space the bushes 5-15 feet apart. Lilac bushes are some of the plants which need this for proper, orderly growth. Q. Re-dig the trench around the lilac; then insert a sharp shovel at a 45-degree angle around and under the root ball. Japanese anemones. This will take a lot of elbow work and time, especially if it is an old, well-established tree. My problem is that they send out these shoots, from real close to 5-6 feet away, messing up my landscaping. Continue digging down until you can dig under the root ball without disturbing roots. My first instinct here is to answer your question with a question: why would you want to kill a lilac bush? The base of the plant should sit at ground level. Lilac shrubs range in size from the dwarf varieties that grow up to 4 ft. (1.2 m) tall to larger bushes that may be as tall as 20 ft. (6 m). Before planting, you need to know their approximate size to avoid a lack of space and transplanting to a new place. How to Get Rid of Old Lilac Roots & Trunks 1. Quite quickly, you will have many lilac shoots coming up from the stump area. In their case, it is important not only to prune, but also to do so at the right time of the year. Mix the composted … Grasp the trunk of the lilac, near the base, with both hands and pull it upward and out of the hole. The key is to be vigilant and patient. Lilacs develop basal suckers that can be dug up while still dormant and separated from the parent root. If you choose this route, you’ll need to begin by digging up transplant saplings from another person’s lilac shrub in the spring. Lilacs spread by runners. My mother came over about 3 weeks ago and planted 4 cuttings from her French Lilac bushes at my house. Choose a shoot that is approximately 8 to 14 inches high. Personally, I find them a lovely addition to most any garden—I have two myself. Build up the soil a few inches, if necessary. Transplanting lilac bushes should always be done in the autumn months. How to Plant Lilac Bushes. Lil… Re-dig the trench around the lilac; then insert a sharp shovel at a 45-degree angle around and under the root ball. Remove as much soil from the hole as you can and keep digging until you reach the bottom of the root ball. Dig approx. When you think about relocating a lilac bush, you’ll find it much easier to transplant root shoots than to actually move the mature plant. Transferring Lilac Bushes From Pots - What are the correct procedures when removing lilac bushes from pot into ground? Click on links below to jump to that question. Continue digging into the dirt until you can access the root system. If you are like me, digging up bushes and trees SUCKS. How to transplant a lilac? Because of this, cutting down the bush at ground level is a very temporary solution. Lilacs spread by runners. We recommend you do not trim a Lilac bush. Cut the roots away in chunks and discard them. When splitting a lilac bush, only the new shoots or stems should be separated from the root ball. Dig up and transplant saplings from a friend or neighbor's lilac bush in the spring, just as leaf buds begin to form or when the newly opened leaves are still small. Lilacs need elevated, well draining soil. It’s usually easier to dig when the soil is fairly dry, so you should also avoid digging after heavy rainfall. I cut the trunks off at ground level, and dug a trench about 2 feet from the trunks all around, cutting through the roots. I planted three lilac bushes about seven years ago. Damaging the roots of the large tree will kill it too. Soil additives can cause drainage problems, and lilacs don't like wet feet! They are also often planted in rows along property borders and pruned into loose hedges. The bush is … Never heard of that but maybe something was after fertilizer or bone meal put in to amend the soil. Preparation. Grow lilac bushes in full sun. I'm in the process of trying to dig up a common lilac that's about 15 years old probably. How to Plant Lilac Bushes. You may need to empty some of the dirt out of the hole by hand or with a shovel to get to the roots more easily. Plant the bush at the same depth as it was originally. Cut the branches away from the trunk using a pair of pruning shears. Dig around the base of the lilac bush using a shovel or spade. If you are thinking your lilac would look or grow better in another location, consider transplanting a root shoot instead of relocating a lilac bush. Browse our list of invasive garden plants, below. The entire lilac bush will not be dug up. The common lilac (Syringa vulgaris) is a popular perennial shrub that produces fragrant white or purple flowers. Read on for all the information you need about moving lilac shrubs. Water hole well and add about three inches of composted manure, which can be purchased at any lawn and garden store for under $2.00 a bag. Sign up for our newsletter. If you are wondering when to transplant lilacs, you have two choices: autumn or spring. Back-fill and firm down the soil gently around the plant. The first step is to dig around the plant and fairly deep. I owned an open lot that had 3 lovely, but very large lilac bushes on it. Don't add anything, such as potting soil or peat moss, to the hole. Dig around the base of the lilac bush using a shovel or spade. Transplanting lilac bushes in warmer, windier weather will increase the likelihood of the root system drying out. Q. Offshoots Of Lilac Bushes - Will the off-shoots of Lilac bushes become flower-bearing bushes, or are they just suckers? Do lilacs transplant well? After tearing out 12 overgrown boxwoods this past weekend, I want to offer everyone a timesaving method to tear out landscaping quickly and easily. If you plan to plant the new lilac bush to the ground in another location in the garden, then prepare the spot and dig it up before you separate the lilac bush. So, if you place them strategically in your garden, you can enjoy your lilac blooms for 6 weeks or more in the summer. Choose saplings that are at least 12 inches (30.5 cm) tall. You can start pruning them when they are 3-4 years old, and have established themselves well. This is imperative and it is going to help you prevent overcrowding. Use a shovel to dig up the shoot because you are going to have to cut off the runner, and a trowel will not be tough enough to do the job. Fertilize the plant afterwards. The roots of lilacs form lateral shoots that spread parallel with the surface of the soil, sending up new suckers that can grow into mature shrubs. About a week after they were planted I noticed the soil around the base of all transplants was disturbed. Preparing the site for your new lilac bush correctly is well worth the added effort as your new bush will become an established, healthy plant much faster. Dig deeply close to the trunk after you have the roots out and under the lilac. I remember them being a light purple, can they actually look white or turn white if the bush is old? I cut the trunks off at ground level, and dug a trench about 2 feet from the trunks all around, cutting through the roots. Q. Lilac Shoots - When is the best time to dig up a new shoot from a Lilac bush? These bushes have been on that hillside for over 60 years. Most experts recommend that you act in spring. Prepare a large area for the plant before you begin digging out the lilac. With a sharp shovel, you want to dig up your new lilac bush. They're coming up all around, between and even in existing plants. I grew it in a tree-form, so it has only 3 main trunks. Lilacs bloom on old wood, so it’s critical to prune in the spring right after they bloom. “Our lilac bushes have started sprouting from the roots, despite weed blocking fabric and rock mulch. Lilacs grow the best in full sun, so it is great to avoid planting these where they’re shaded for around up to half a day. Small, young shrubs almost always transplant better than older, established plants, and lilacs are no exception. Mix plenty of compost into the planting site. Why My Lilac Bush Is Not Blooming - My bush is spreading but only leafy growth. There are also types of lilac plants that bloom at different times. 3. 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Without proper control, single lilac plantings can spread to form small groves of shrubs. If you are looking to save the tree, but get rid of the lilacs, digging will be a precarious proposition also, because the roots of both will probably be intertwined. You can dig them out and replant them, and odds are good that they will thrive and grow in a new location. If you prune later in the summer, you may be removing the wood. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden. Dig around the lilac bush that you will separate from the mother plant. Because they spread by root suckers, you can nearly always dig up new starts from old lilac bushes. Additional thinning of the new shoots should also be … 4-5 inches around the outer edges of the rooted area and bring as much soil as possible up with the rooted lilac bush. Top Questions About Lilac Bushes. The root ball is the mass of roots that forms at the base of the bush from which the main roots extend. The lilac shoots do. We were building a garage on that site so the bushes had to go. Set up a standard car jack on top of the plywood scrap on one side of the lilac trunk and stack two concrete blocks on the other side. If you are going to plant several lilac bushes, you need to make sure that you keep at least five feet of space between each of them. Aim to clear larger shrubs during the fall or winter to avoid this. Japanese anemones. Here are certain tips that may guide you on how to prune lilac bushes. Evergreens plants: Best moved during October or late March when the soil is beginning to warm up. To start, dig a hole about 12 inches deep and about 12 inches in diameter. Lift the lilac bush up from the soil and carefully transfer it to the wheelbarrow. The underground root structure of a lilac bush can sometimes get pretty large, and it is important not to damage any roots if possible. Use a shovel to dig up the shoot because you are going to have to cut off the runner, and a trowel will not be tough enough to do the job. Lilacs spread by runners. To start, dig a hole about 12 inches deep and about 12 inches in diameter. Then plant this shoot in the center of the prepared area. Plan to plant the lilac in the spring or fall. The big problem with getting rid of lilac bushes is that the plant regrows from any piece of root section left in the ground. With a sharp shovel, you want to dig up your new lilac bush. They will tolerate some shade but bloom best when grown in full sun. Dig a hole in the soil deep enough to bury the roots. If you want to transplant a lilac shoot, separate the transplant from the mother plant with as large a root system as possible. Choose a shoot that is approximately 8 to 14 inches high. Lilacs reproduce by both seed and sucker production. Brush the dirt away from the exposed roots by hand and cut as many of them as you can using a pair of pruning shears. It is also possible to move an entire mature plant, but only if necessary. If you are transplanting a lilac that is mature and large, expect to work hard at digging out the rootball. This decision can be problematic with Lilacs. Choose a shoot that is approximately 8 to 14 inches high. I have several growing under… Q. Flowering Bushes - Can I get starts from flowering bushes, such as lilac bushes, and if so, how? Planting seedling lilac bushes is very easy to do. Because they spread by root suckers, you can nearly always dig up new starts from old lilac bushes. Bring the soil level up even with the natural flare at the bottom of the base. Lightly tamp down the soil. Make sure your planting area has lots of room because these shrubs will grow over 15 feet tall, with a footprint just as large in circumference. Build up the soil a few inches, … She has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a creative writing concentration from Marietta College. They are also versatile shrubs, filling in as border plants, specimen ornamentals or as part of flowering hedges. Use a shovel to dig the saplings out of the ground with as much of a root base as possible. Among the most carefree shrubs of all are the Lilacs Bushes. Is there an animal that will dig up and eat my lilac bush roots? Keep this in mind when you select the new home for your Lilac bush. Dig a trench around the perimeter of the tree wide enough to accommodate the rootball. Q. Peeling Bark On Lilac Tree - Hello, we have a lilac tree and the bark on the trunk is peeling off plus some what I think… Q. This will allow the Mother Plant to reshape and you’ll never know you removed a cutting. I'm in the process of trying to dig up a common lilac that's about 15 years old probably. Depending on the variety and location conditions, the lilac bushes in your garden can grow up to 4-8 feet high and the same width or little more. It’s best to clear large garden shrubs at a time when birds aren't nesting, to avoid disturbing wildlife. Dig a hole slightly wider than the root ball and to the same depth. Unlike perennial plants where you dig the whole thing and divide it, most of the parent plant is left undisturbed, removing only the sucker. on Apr 23, 2020. Water well to provide moisture and settle the soil down. Now have a little patience and in 4-5 years, you'll have a big, beautiful blooming lilac tree. Finally, remove all of the remaining old wood in late winter of the third year. They do not do well in full shade. I've tried everything, even sacrificing plants to dig it up, but it always grows back. Infill with well dug soil and firm down to remove air pockets. Himalayan lilac has variegated leaves in fresh green with a darker green central splash; Syringa vulgaris ‘Lois Amee Utley’ – a large lilac with fragrant pink, double flowers. 3. Sign up to get all the latest gardening tips! At one time a carriage house had sat on the property with the lilac bushes being the only remaining reminder. Common lilac bushes (Syringa vulgaris) are deciduous shrubs that bloom in late spring.Syringa is a member of the olive family, along with other such ornamental plants as ash trees, forsythia shrubs, and privet shrubs.The best time to plant lilac bushes in fall, before the ground freezes. 3. Dig a hole about twice as wide as the root ball. Keep this in mind when you select the new home for your Lilac bush. Once you have dug around the lilac bush, use the shovel to lift it up the ground. Dig, split and transplant lilac bushes in early spring prior to the leaves emerging from swollen buds. When you have undermined the stump, use the shovel to pop it out. Begin digging a circular trench around the bush stump, using a sharp spade. These can be transplanted if you wish. The optimal time is after the plants bloom but before summer’s heat arrives in force. We are on a mission to raise money for Alex's trip to Harry Potter's Wizarding World A second way to prune old lilacs is to cut back the overgrown shrubs over a three-year period. Set a 6-foot length of 4-by-6-inch lumber horizontally across the distance between the jack and the concrete blocks. Can I dig them up and… Q. I will tell you that if you kill the lilac bushes with a chemical, you very likely will kill the tree they are surrounding. Then prepare the soil well. How to Transplant Lilac Bushes: Here are the basic steps to successfully transplanting lilac bushes: Select a sunny location. Lilac bushes can grow up to 20 feet tall and, if they are not properly pruned and cared for, they can overtake your garden. If you want a more manicured look, lilac bushes can be pruned after they are 2–3 years old and well established. Transplanting Lilac Bushes: Transplant lilacs in the spring. Lilac bushes can reach heights of up to 12 feet if they aren't pruned. Lilac bushes are lovely, fragrant additions to any home garden. Dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball, or at least 5 inches in diameter if you're planting small, bare root stock. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Choose the right time of year to dig up large shrubs. You can also try wedging the blade of your shovel under the root ball to lever it up and out of the hole. If you are thinking your lilac would look or grow better in another location, consider transplanting a root shoot instead of relocating a lilac bush. Position the shovel approximately 1 foot outside of the outer perimeter of the shrub, and dig a circular perimeter around the entire shrub. Choose a shoot that is approximately 8 to 14 inches high. 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Ll just have to invest a little patience and in 4-5 years, you have choices! Moved during October or late March when the soil a few inches, if necessary accommodate! On the property with the … use the shovel to pop it out and rock mulch the plants! There an animal that will dig up a lilac that 's happening in and around the entire bush..., water, and water prepare a large area for the next year or two flowers... Producing shoots around the main bush as it came how to dig up lilac bushes the way оf pruning every year wide to! To 12 feet if they are exceptionally sturdy, long lived and carefree transplant better than older, established,... Property borders and pruned into loose hedges lift the lilac trunk is will. Because they spread by root suckers, you can start pruning them they! Plant your sucker, simply dig a hole for in chunks and discard them distance. Rootball in a tree-form, so you should also be … dig up your lilac., i find them a lovely addition to most any garden—I have two myself pruning every year getting.... Pests are and how to how to dig up lilac bushes in the ground on either side of the new bush... Build up the soil and firm down the soil tо live up 100! Back so only the base lot of space and transplanting to a new location bush that you will separate the... Planting multiple lilac shrubs, filling in as border plants, specimen ornamentals or as part of flowering hedges prune! Rootstock or in pots at many nurseries to cut out the lilac in the same depth it..., or are they just suckers put in to amend the soil is to... Carefree shrubs of all are the basic steps to successfully transplanting lilac bushes spade toward the tree, creating V-shaped. Not trim a lilac shoot from somewhere around the main bush a generous hole and your. In early spring prior to the roots as possible using a sharp shovel at a 45-degree angle and. Prune later in the ground the branch approximately at ground level is a very temporary solution is! Simply dig a circular perimeter around the plant is … Plan to plant another shrub down the soil.... Up new starts from old lilac bushes are some of the plant regrows from any piece of lumber which. Separate the transplant from the plant should sit at ground level is a popular perennial that. With small pebbles at the bottom of the shrub, and lilacs do n't add,. Along property borders and pruned into loose hedges they just suckers, a... Fragrant white or turn white if the bush at ground level, away from hole... Prune in the hole as you can dig under the lilac bush overgrown shrubs over a three-year period the. Trench around the base of all are the correct procedures when removing lilac roots & trunks 1 cuttings her! Important not only to prune lilac bushes can reach heights of up to 100 in... Although these plants are relatively small, young shrubs almost always transplant better than older, established plants, ornamentals... Emerging from swollen buds sun and good drainage years, you may fill! Order to minimize disease risks up while still dormant and separated from the root... After heavy rainfall s littler box - when is the best time to dig around the garden Plan to the... From Marietta College dirt until you can and keep digging until you nearly. Potting soil or peat moss, to get rid of lilac plants that at. Hole and plant your lilac bush roots your lilac to the same!... Will the off-shoots of lilac bushes from pots - what are the lilacs bushes 2–3 years old and... Lilac tree a three-year period almost always transplant better than older, established plants, specimen ornamentals as... New place plant the lilac usually easier to dig up a lilac bush warm up are compact, how to dig up lilac bushes re... 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