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In general, by the time a stem reaches more than 2 inches.

Plan to prune the French lilac in the spring when it finishes flowering. The buds for the next year form during the summer. Late pruning removes those buds, reducing the amount of blooms the. Apr 02, When to Trim Lilac Bushes. Knowing when to trim lilac bushes is important.

Retain several well-spaced, vigorous stems and remove all the others.

Most lilacs don’t require pruning until they reach about 6 to 8 feet ( m.) tall. The best time for pruning lilac bushes is right after their flowering has ceased. This allows new shoots plenty of time to develop the next season of blooms. Pruning lilacs too late can kill young developing buds. Jul 08, When to Prune Lilac Bushes.

Many of the newer lilac varieties grow quickly and might need pruning starting in their second or third year. In general, by the time a stem reaches more than 2 inches in diameter, it should be pruned. If you are diligent with annual pruning of your lilac, the shrub will grow to about 8 feet tall with flowers throughout the branches. Oct 06, While a little care is required to keep plants healthy and strong, getting too happy with the pruning shears early in the life of flowers like the lilac results in stunted or dead plants.

You should resist the temptation to prune or trim your lilac bush until it is at least 6 ft. tall, which typically occurs during the second or third year of growth. Lilacs should be pruned yearly to develop a good framework of stems and promote vigorous growth that enhances flowering.

Yearly pruning consists of cutting diseased, misshapen, and unproductive stems to the ground. I also thin and remove some stems to encourage properly spaced, vigorous growth.