Lilac Bushes
Q.

can certain nutrients increase lilac’s fragrance?

Zone Near Portland, Oregon | cmh1103@me.com added on April 1, 2015 | Answered

I am getting 4-5 blooms the first of April in Oregon, which possess very minimal fragrance. Is there anything I can do to enhance that fragrance? What fertilizers would you recommend? I know ammonium sulfate is supposed to enhance blueberry size/flavor. Is there anything like that for lilacs?

A.
A.Answers to this queston: Add Answer
shelley
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on April 1, 2015

My research did not yield any information to suggest it was possible to boost a lilac's fragrance through soil amendments. The potency of a lilac's fragrance largely depends on the variety (medium to dark purple ones are more fragrant) and can be influenced by the surrounding air temperature. I consider flower fragrancy to be more of a genetic disposition, the function of which is to attract insect pollinators.

Here is an interesting article that discusses the fragrancy of lilacs:
https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/shrubs/lilac/lilacs-no-scent.htm

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