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PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:49 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2006 1:24 pm
Posts: 1450
Location: Kamloops, BC
A little over two years ago I left the C&S heaven of San Diego, CA for the perennial heaven of Kamloops, BC. Somehow, I've managed to not kill the lilacs (+30) that I've put in over the last two years here.

My question - is this the place to yack about lilacs and bother you with questions about them?

Thank you,

Jeff


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 6:01 pm 
Yup - this would be the place. :)

I too love lilacs, but haven't yet planted any on the farm here. Did have some lovely whites (which seem to be an especially favorite color here in VA) at our first "farmette" in the VA mountains, & absolutely LOVED the medium lavendar & deep dark almost-black purple varieties my parents grew back in NY. Their scent filled the entire property & house every May, & I used to gift friends with huge cut bunches of them.

The biggest problem growing them here in VA is our hot humid summers which bring on powdery mildew with a vengeance.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 4:39 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 10:46 pm
Posts: 138
Location: Pennsylvania, USA Z-6
What kinds did you plant? They are tough reliable plants for northern climes.

Lilacs, sweet lilacs. Around here, if you spot an old clump of lilacs but the farm buildings are missing, the lilacs mark the spot of the outhouse. That's because during the winter, bacteria aren't as active, so the 'stuff' piles up. In the spring when temps warm again, the exuberant bacteria multiply and so for a certain period the smell is bad (can we say feculent on here?).

Then the lilacs bloom. Timing and attributes coincide and in theory they cancel each other out, sort of, you hope.

There are many kinds of lilacs, as you have learned, Sir Alo-isius. Several species will easily love it where you are. There are a lot of grafted ones that don't act like kudzu, but don't get the ones grafted on privet. Syringa vulgaris is worth growing, but I hope you enjoy pruning.
Growing Lilac in that latitude has many advantages to growing them around here. You have fewer borers and less mildew, for starters. The first are usually fatal, and while the second isn't, you wish it were sometimes. Blotchy white leaves might not kill the lilac, but you know the same mildews are blowing over to my squash and killing them.

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For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed. Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 5:05 pm 
Pete - Yes, I DO know that Lilacs are pretty tough & reliable plants for northern climes, but I'm NOT IN a Northern clime. I live in the northern/southern cusp of Virginia, & Powdery Mildew is a BIG problem here, regardless of what lilac variety one grows.

I'm not sure I understand your post. Are you trying to tell me that there are lilac varieties specifically slated for southern growing & thus less susceptible to Powdery Mildew? Or just thankful that if I do decide to plant lilacs, that you & your squash don't live next to me?


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 5:35 pm
Posts: 177
Location: NH zone 4/5
I do train some to live on-in trays. Don't breed them. Not particularly hip on cultivar names. But yea I likes to talk about lilacs.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 8:29 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 2:57 pm
Posts: 1101
Location: Kernersville, NC Z7a
Never had an issue with mildew on Miss Kim Lilac in my garden here in the piedmont of NC, although I do get it on other plants in the garden.
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Three other people in the neighborhood have some variety of them in their yards and have never noticed mildew on them either. One of the nieghbors has a variety that I have had in a previous garden at another house in the same area and never had mildew on it either--were purchased at Lowes several years back.

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This one not far from my house is doing well as you can see it is higher than their fence.

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Sorry I can't help you with the specific varieties other than Miss Kim.

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In skating over thin ice, our safety is in our speed--R.W. Emerson

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PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 10:26 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2006 1:24 pm
Posts: 1450
Location: Kamloops, BC
Thank you all for your help with the shrubs. They're doing well, so well that I have to move one - it's about 6 feet tall.

Do you have any pointers in doing so? I've moved large Pachypodiums, Bombax and various Cereus cactus but never this large a shrub.

I also have to move a 10' crabapple (Malus sp?), and likewise need pointers on that, if you're feeling particularly generous.

Thank you very much again - the shrubberies thank you, too.


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PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2009 10:50 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2008 10:08 pm
Posts: 221
Location: Zone 5
Don't know if this applies in the South or not, but I found that good air flow seemed to help control mildew up here.

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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2009 9:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 10:46 pm
Posts: 138
Location: Pennsylvania, USA Z-6
Hi all. I'm here in Downeast Maine where no mildew is reported also, but when I get home in late June I will send a pic of almost white leaves on my Lilac. Mildew starts about the time the Bee Balm / Monarda blooms. It doesn't seem to hurt the plants, and I'm certain it is related to the many days over 85F / 30C with 90% humidity and nights above 70F / 20C. Many plants get it, especially the mints, roses and even Tulip Poplars. The Mid-Atlantic region is notorious for the difficulty we have growing roses, for instance, and one of the main impediments is fungal prevalence. But I digress....

Jeff, transplanting a lilac is as simple as firing up the tractor, putting a chain around the clump and towing it to the new spot. Digging a hole for it is an option. Seriously though, lilacs root easy in the spring, and even an old cactus wrangler should not have a problem. Water well during dry spells.

The Crabapple however can ne a bit trickier. Ideally, it will be dug before the leaves show. Roots tend to be wide and shallow, with only a couple of deep taproots. Water well for the first 2 years if it is dry. A ten foot crab. Wow, might be a little much for old people to move without help from young'uns.

Which leads me to note that many upright crabs around here are defoliated by late July from mildew and other fungus (leaf spot, rust and the like). Although they make a gaudy statement in the spring, watching the leaves turn black, brown and then fall in mid-summer is why I have resisted the urge to plant one. Give me the biennial blooming species any day over the naked hybrids that bloom every spring.


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