The recently relocated Lilac Collection, situated along an accessible winding path between the Osborne Garden and the Cranford Rose Garden, features a diverse array of lilacs propagated from divisions of the original specimens from the Garden’s historic collection dating back to 1914.
The lilacs are displayed in chronological groups based on when they were first bred or noted in scientific literature, beginning with pre-1880 species and including many bred by French nurseryman Victor Lemoine in the early 20th century. More modern cultivars, including smaller varieties developed for home gardens, are also included. The new design, which was completed in 2019, allows access to people of all abilities along a gentle, contoured path.
Fragrant blossoms in white, violet, bluish, lilac, pinkish, magenta, and purple, in single and double forms, typically begin blooming in late April and reach their peak near Mother's Day. Late-blooming lilacs continue to bloom through the end of May.
Learn More: Lilacs in Bloom in Their New Home
The double-flowered Syringa vulgaris ‘Léon Gambetta’ in May. Photo by Sarah Schmidt.
Syringa vulgaris ‘Nadezhda’, a double-flowered lilac cultivar beginning to bloom in mid-May. Photo by Sarah Schmidt.
Syringa vulgaris ‘Rochester’ one of the many specimens grown from divisions made from the Garden's historic collection. Photo by Sarah Schmidt.
Syringa × hyacinthiflora ‘Old Glory’ in full bloom. Photo by Sarah Schmidt.
Littleleaf lilac (Syringa pubescens subsp. microphylla) blooming in early May. Photo by Sarah Schmidt.