Lilac Bushes
Q.

Do you trim off this year dead flower or do they stay?

Zone Somers ct. 06071 | Shwheeler57 added on August 28, 2018 | Answered

My lilac tree is about 15' tall and I am in the process of pruning it to about 6' tall.

A.
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drtreelove
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on August 29, 2018

You should "deadhead", prune off the spent flowers.

Nine foot height reduction of a 15 foot plant is very extreme and can be detrimental. The Best Management Practices standard for the tree and landscape industry is to not remove more than 25% of the foliage in a one year period. More than that is stressful for the plant physiology, and it destroys the natural form and beauty. And it will cause rampant regrowth that will require extra maintenance.

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