Lilac - the nymph of the garden!
The name of the lilac comes from the Greek word ‘syrinx’ - a tube, which, apparently, indicates the structure of the flower. According to another version - on behalf of the nymph Searing, turned into a reed, from which the forest god Pan made a shepherd “syrinx” flute.
- Description of Lilac
- Preparation for planting a lilac
- Lilac Planting Technique
- Lilac Care
- Propagation of lilac
- Diseases and Pests
Description of Lilac
Lilac (Syringa) - a genus of shrubs belonging to the family Olive (Oleaceae) These include up to 10 species of plants distributed in the wild in Southeast Europe (Hungary, the Balkans) and in Asia, mainly in China.
The leaves of the lilac are opposite, usually whole, less often pinnately separate, falling in the winter. The flowers are white, purple or pink, located in panicles that end the branches. The cup is small, short, bell-shaped with four cloves.
The corolla is usually with a long cylindrical tube (less commonly, as, for example, in Amur lilacs with a shortened tube) and a flat four-part limb. Two stamens attached to the corolla tube. Ovary one, with a bifid stigma. The fruit is a dry bivalve box.
All types of lilacs have beautiful flowers, which is why they are bred in the gardens. The common lilac (Syringa vulgaris L.) is especially widespread - a luxurious shrub, extremely hardy, which grows well outdoors both in the south and in the north of Europe and decorates the gardens with large inflorescences of its fragrant flowers in spring.
In addition to the main form with lilac flowers, varieties with white and pinkish flowers arose in the culture. They are also used for distillation in greenhouses, so almost all winter you can have fresh lilac flowers. This species grows wildly in the Balkans.
In addition to ordinary lilacs, we can mention more persian lilac (Syringa persica L.) with narrower, sometimes cirrus leaves, hungarian lilac (Syringa Josikoe Jacq.) With odorless flowers, native to Hungary; Syringa Emodi Wall. originally from the Himalayas; Syringa japonica Maxim from Japan. In China, several species of lilac grow wildly. Amur lilac (Syringa amurensis Rupr.) Is found on the Amur River in Russia.
Preparation for planting a lilac
Lilac seedlings are planted in the planting pits, which dig 2-3 weeks before planting. Two-four-year-old plants of lilac are planted in pits with a diameter of 40-50 cm, with a depth of 35-45 cm. The pit is filled with the upper fertile soil layer, with the addition of humus, semi-overripe manure, peat or feathered peat. Up to 20 kg of these organic fertilizers are added to the landing pit.
In addition, on acidic soils add 2-2.5 kg of calcareous tuff. On sandy soils, lime should be added in the form of dolomite flour containing magnesium, which is not enough in light sandy soils. At the same time, mineral fertilizers are applied: 0.7-0.9 kg of granular superphosphate and 0.3 kg of phosphate rock or bone meal; up to 150 g of potassium sulfate and 700-900 g of wood ash.
Mixing of organic and mineral fertilizers with the soil is carried out in such a way that most of them fall into the lower part of the pit. If this amount of soil is not enough to fill, then soil is poured into the pit from the fertile layer of row spacing.
Lilac Planting Technique
Before planting, the damaged part of the root system is cut with a sharpened garden knife or secateurs. The lilac root system, especially in dry times, is dipped in clay dummy before laying in the planting pits. If the pits are not covered with prepared soil before planting, then before planting they are filled to half and evenly compacted.
After that, a mound of earth is poured in the center of the pit almost to the upper edge of the pit. The lilac root system is placed on the knoll, directing the roots in different directions. To avoid deepening of the plant after subsidence of the soil, the root neck should be located 4-6 cm above the soil level.
Having sprinkled the root system of lilacs with a 3-5-cm layer of fertile soil, the pit is thrown with the remaining soil and densely trampled with your feet, starting from the edge. Sealing is carried out carefully, avoiding damage to the root system.
Around the planted plant is poured a roller of earth with a height of 15-20 cm, forming a hole for irrigation. 15-20 liters of water are poured into the hole. After absorption, the trunks are sprinkled with dry soil and mulched with a 3-5-cm layer of peat.
The lilac is unpretentious, and caring for it is simple.
Lilacs should be planted either in early spring, before the buds open, or in autumn. The best time to land is September. A planted young bush should be watered often. And adult established bushes are watered only during drought.
In early spring, weak, dried and growing inside the bush lilac branches are cut, and the “wild” shoot is also removed from the grafted as it appears. Faded panicles are cut, trying not to damage the shoots next to them, on which flower buds are laid - of which flowers will appear next year.
When feeding a bush, do not get carried away with nitrogen fertilizers, including organic ones - the lilac will bloom worse and endure the winter poorly. It is enough to introduce complex fertilizer in the spring and potash with phosphorus - after flowering, and this can be done even not every year.
The soil under the bushes must be loosened carefully so as not to damage the superficial root system. All other rules are standard, take care of the lilac just like any decorative shrub.
Propagation of lilac
Wild species of lilacs propagate by seed. Sowing is carried out in autumn or spring after two-month stratification of seeds at a temperature of 2-5 ° C. Varietal lilac propagated by layering, cuttings or inoculation. Vaccination is performed with a cuttings or a sleeping kidney (budding). The stock can be privet ordinary, Hungarian lilac and common lilac.
Lilacs can be oculated by a sleeping bud (in summer) and awakening (in early spring, at the beginning of the growing season). During spring budding, cuttings are harvested in February - March and stored in a refrigerator in bundles of 10 to 20 pieces wrapped in paper.
With spring budding, the survival rate is 80%. The vitality of oculants is high, and they successfully winter. Due to the rapid budding of the buds in spring, there is little time for budding, therefore, the method of reproduction by a sleeping kidney is more common.
The stock is prepared from the second half of June: lateral shoots are cut to a height of 12-15 cm, the shoots are removed. Late pruning of lilacs, immediately before budding, is not recommended, since the pruning place does not have time to heal. At the rootstock, the thickness of the root collar should be 0.6 - 1.5 cm, and the bark should be easily separated from the wood.
For this, it is necessary to water the plants abundantly 5 to 6 days before the vaccination. On the day of budding, the stock is unleashed, and the vaccination site is thoroughly wiped with a clean, damp cloth. Lilac cuttings with buds for budding are prepared as they mature. The buds of mature shoots are large, the bark is brown in color, the maturity of the cuttings is also determined by bending: it emits a weak crackle as a result of a break in lignified tissue.
The optimal thickness of the lilac cuttings is 3-4 mm, the length is 20 - 30 cm, it is better to cut them off from the south or south-west side of the crown of the bush. Leaf blades are removed, and leaf petioles with a length of 1 - 1.5 cm are left. They serve for the convenience of budding. Prepared cuttings are packed in a plastic film with moistened moss or sawdust and stored in a basement or refrigerator for 7-10 days.
The kidneys are taken from the middle part of the shoot. Top, usually floral (1-2 pairs) are not used. Unsuitable for budding and lower, poorly developed kidneys. From one mature shoot, you can take 10-15 full kidneys.
The best period of lilac budding in central Russia is the second half of July. The success of budding depends on the technique. At a height of 3-5 cm from the ground level, a T-shaped incision is made with a quick short movement of the knife so as not to touch the wood tissue. The length of the longitudinal incision is 2-3 cm. At the point of contact of the incisions, the bark is raised (with the bone of a garden budding knife).
The handle is taken in the left hand and held by the thumb and middle fingers above the cut kidney. The index finger is extended and supports the handle from the bottom. The knife blade is placed at an acute angle to the handle 1 - 1.5 cm above the kidney. With a quick movement of the right hand, the knife is inserted shallowly into the wood and moved towards itself.
The entire length of the flap must be kept at the same depth and only under the kidney the blade is slightly deepened and pressed to overcome the denser tissue of the vascular bundle. A correctly cut shield has a thin layer of wood, its length is 2-2.5 cm, the position of the kidney is in the center.
Further preparation of the flap consists in the separation of wood. The shield is held in the left hand with the wood up. The wood is carefully lifted with a knife and a quick movement, supporting with the thumb of the right hand, is separated from the bark. If the vascular bundle is damaged, the flap must be discarded.
A properly prepared flap is taken by the petiole and inserted into a T-shaped incision on the stock. The knife bone can be used to move the flap down and, at best, it should be in the middle of the incision. The bark of the rootstock is bent to the flap and tied.
For strapping, an elastic film used in medicine for compresses is used. Ribbons are cut 30 - 40 cm long, 1-1.5 cm wide. The harness starts from the top and ends under the kidney. The ends of the tape are fixed above the transverse incision in two turns clockwise. The winding is spiral: each lower turn is overlapped by the upper.
The harness should tightly, without gaps, close the entire longitudinal section on the stock. The flap bud remains open. The end of the tape at the bottom is fixed with a loop. Then the rootstock is spudded, after 5-7 days the oculants should be watered, and after 15-20 days you can check the survival rate: the buds that have taken root are shiny, have a fresh appearance, the petiole disappears with light pressure. Not accustomed buds dry out, blacken, petiole stays firmly held.
It is best to budge lilac from 5 to 10 and from 16 to 20 hours. In the rain, budding is not carried out. Immediately after the first frosts, the oculants are covered with dry peat with a layer of 5-10 cm above the vaccination site. In spring, peat is raked, strapping is removed, and trunks are cut “on a thorn” above the kidney by 5–7 cm.
The place of cut is covered with garden var. Kidneys are immediately removed from the spike, except for the top 2-3, which provide sap flow and nutrient supply. When the eye begins to grow, then the remaining kidneys are removed from the spike. A new shoot of lilac is tied to a thorn so as not to break off.
Diseases and Pests
Lilacs are affected relatively rarely by pests and diseases. The most common and dangerous are the following.
Lilac Mining Moth hits the leaves. At first, they are covered with brown spots - mines, then coagulate and dry out. The bush becomes as if burnt. The next year, such bushes almost do not bloom. Butterflies fly out in mid-May - early June and lay eggs on the lower part of the leaf along the veins. After 5-10 days, caterpillars come out and penetrate the flesh of the leaf.
Around mid-July, caterpillars descend to the ground and pupate in the upper soil layer, to a depth of 5 cm. After 18 days, butterflies fly out. Second-generation pupae winter in soil at a depth of 3-5 cm.
Control measures. Digging the soil under the bushes in late autumn and spring to a depth of 20 cm with turning the reservoir. At the same time, care must be taken not to damage the root system, since it is located superficially at the lilac. With minor damage to the bushes, cut the affected leaves and burn them.
Bacterial necrosis. The disease progresses in the first half of August. The disease is transmitted by insects, through water during irrigation, with planting material and through injuries. The pathogen hibernates in fallen leaves, in the tissues of diseased shoots. Signs of the disease: leaf blackening, brown shoots. First, lilac leaves and shoot tips are affected, then the disease goes down. Young shoots are affected from the base of the leaf cuttings.
Control measures. Timely pest control. Collection and destruction of fallen leaves, pruning and burning of affected parts of the plant. Heavily affected bushes are uprooted and burned. Lilac cuttings before vaccination should be disinfected.