Ivory Silk Japanese Tree Lilac

Botanical Name: Syringa reticulata ‘Ivory Silk’

Alternate Name: Ivory Silk Lilac, Japanese Tree Lilac

The Ivory Silk Japanese Tree Lilac (Syringa reticulata ‘Ivory Silk’) is a small deciduous tree that produces an abundance of very large spectacular flower panicles in the summer. This lilac tree grows in a pyramidal or oval shape as a juvenile tree but develops a more rounded growth habit as it matures. It can grow larger than other lilacs, to a height of 20-25 feet and width of 15-20 feet.

The blooms of the Ivory Silk Japanese Tree Lilac appear in May or June, usually after other lilacs have bloomed. The blooms hang down in huge panicles of tiny ivory flowers, growing up to 12 inches long with a strong, attractive fragrance. The flowers are followed by brown capsules which can persist into winter.

The leaves measure 5 inches in length and are dark green and lance or elliptical in shape. The fall color is bright yellow or orange. The bark is dark red and adds interest to the winter landscape.

This tree is not susceptible to any significant diseases or pests. The Ivory Silk Japanese Tree Lilac is attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds. It is also cold hardy and adaptable to urban environments, withstanding pollution as well as tolerating heavy clay soil. Remove spent flowers before the seeds set.

Height: 20-25 ft.

Width: 15-20 ft.

Shape: Rounded

Flower Color: Creamy white

Flowering Time: May-June

Fall Color: Orange, Yellow

Features: Showy fragrant flowers, colorful fall display, winter interest

Exposure: Full Sun to Part Shade. Blooms best in Full Sun.

Watering: Moderate & Regular

Soil: Prefers acidic, rich, moist, well-drained soils. Dislikes clay or rocky soils and poor drainage.

Growth Rate: Slow-Moderate

USDA Zones: 3-7

Uses: Accent tree, hedge, urban tree, wildlife tree, cutting garden

Similar trees: Magnolia virginiana ‘Jim Wilson’ (Moonglow Magnolia)Malus 'Spring Snow' (Spring Snow Crabapple)Cornus kousa 'Milky Way' (Milky Way Dogwood),  Cornus kousa ‘Venus’ (Venus Dogwood)Stewartia pseudocamellia (Japanese Stewartia), Styrax japonicus (Japanese Snowbell)

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