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Spring Lilac Inspiration and Tips

I always get so excited when the lilacs start blooming in the spring! These gorgeous, sweet-smelling flowers are so sentimental to me. Here are some spring lilac inspiration and tips I’d love to share with you!

Lilacs flower for only 2-3 weeks in the season, so I take full advantage of their beauty, for as long as I possibly can.

I go from room to room, as well as my outdoor spaces, taking loads of pictures that I use for more spring lilac inspiration.

A bucket full of lilacs and dog sitting on a vintage chair and quilt

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Vintage bucket of lilacs on farm table in a cottage kitchen.
Vintage bucket full of spring lilac inspiration

Unlike other woody shrubs, lilacs set next year’s flower buds during the summer, so do any pruning or shaping, right after they bloom to avoid affecting next year’s flower production.

Cutting long stems when harvesting, will ensure that next season’s blooms will have longer, straighter stems. If you want a larger lilac bush, prune it at least once a year, but less often.

Spring view with lilacs and lemons on an kitchen island.

Cut lilacs are very hard to keep hydrated and are prone to wilting. Here are a few tips I have found that help me when harvesting:

  • Pick flowers when it’s cool, in the morning or evening.
  • Fill a bucket (or more) 3/4 full of cool water.
  • Choose stems that have half to three-quarters of the flowers on the bloom cluster open. The more fully they are open, the less vase life they will have.
Lilacs and mirror on a fireplace mantel
  • Transfer the cut blooms to a cool place immediately after harvesting.
  • Remove all the leaves so the plant isn’t putting energy into keeping the leaves hydrated as well.
  • Re-cut the 4-stem ends and slice them vertically up the stem 2-3 inches. Then grasp one side of the sliced stem and twist it backwards. Put the freshly cut stems immediately into cool water.
  • Leave the lilacs in a cool and dark space for a few hours so they can rehydrate. After that time, you can start arranging them.
Bucket full of lilacs sitting on a chippy nightstand.

Lilacs are edible. They are also great in a cocktail!

Spring lilacs sitting in a farm sink
Photo Credit: Debbie @seaside_cottage_couture

Purple lilacs are a symbol of first love. White lilacs symbolize youthful innocence.

lilacs in a sea of white
Photo Credit: Debra @vintagecrushin

Purple lilacs are more fragrant on a warm day.

green vintage dresser vanity with lilacs in baskets
Photo Credit: Emily @3acrehomestead

Lilacs are fire-retardant and are always considered a great plant near homes that are more susceptible to wildfires.

lilacs and cat on table in greenhouse
Photo Credit: Tracey @tracey_hiebert

The lilac is the state flower of New Hampshire.

I hope you enjoyed my spring lilac inspiration and tips. For more on how to split a lilac bush visit Rachel of The Pond’s Farmhouse. And if you want more lilac fun, visit my May Spring Tablescape!

If you have any questions or additional suggestions, feel free to share them in the comments below. And be sure to share this blog post link with anyone who may find these lilac tips useful.

Until next time,

Happy Spring!

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Bucket full of lilacs with chippy turquoise vintage window.

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  1. Lilacs are one of my all time favorites. The scent brings back childhood memories that make me smile. Thank you for sharing. Your home is lovely and looks so welcoming. Visiting from Shoestring Elegance’s link party. So glad I stopped in to your corner of the blog world!

    1. Thank you so much for your visit! They remind me of my Nana. They were her favorite flowers! I appreciate the kind words about my home! Can’t wait to go visit your blog!

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words and the feature Theresa! I’m beyond excited, and really appreciate you hosting such a wonderful party!

  2. I love the scent of lilacs and how beautiful they are! I never knew that they were edible, though. Very interesting! I love your photos!

  3. Beautiful pictures…I have a deep purple lilac tree and I thought the snow and ice of last weekend killed the buds but it is in full bloom now…Thanks so much for stopping by!! I hope you are having a great weekend!

  4. Good morning Kim,
    Good tips for prolonging vase life. Wish I’d known years ago. The Royal Botanical Garden (RBG) in Burlington Ontario (40 minutes from Toronto) has the largest collection of lilacs in North America. The Lilac Dell features trees & blooms of every description and color and scent. These trees are very very old, many from France. On the first Sunday in May, weather permitting, live chamber music is played while people stroll through the dell savoring the beauty. Lilacs remind me of my grandmother, who had a magical green jthumb, and they remain a favorite of mine. As always Kim, thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you for letting me know about the RBG Barbara. That sounds like an amazing place to visit. Definitely going on my bucket list! I think that because my grandmother loved lilacs, like yours did, I love this spring flower even more.

  5. Love these beautiful photos, Kim! I actually have a lilac bush to be planted this year. Friends gave it to me in honor of my mother!

    1. Thank you Molly! That is just about the most thoughtful gift a friend could give someone. I am absolutely loving that! It will look beautiful!

  6. Thanks so much for the lilac tips – I’m happy to learn about pruning and blooming. Ours just finished, so now’s probably the time. I so love your beautiful photos, and the ones you shared too. Happy gardening up there! See you next time! ?

  7. Wow, I learned so much from this post! For one, I did not know that lilacs were edible! I will prune our liliacs this year in the hope that they grow bushy and not leggy – thank you for sharing these tips!

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