Syringa amurensis japonicaAlso known as Syringa reticulata, this deciduous tree or shrub is found growing in organically rich, well-drained soil in northern area where winters are very cold. It is a member of the olive family, Olaeceae, that also includes ash, jasmine, privet, and forsythia. The erect ,rounded to oval plants are single or multitrunked and have smooth, shiny, gray-brown bark and ovate medium to dark green leaves two to six inches long that turn an uninteresting green to chartreuse-brown in the fall.. The small creamy-white to creamy-yellow flowers are carried well above the foliage in terminal panicles four to twelve inches long in late spring to early summer, and have an odor that is considered unpleasant by most people. The fruits are small, brown, leathery capsules that are not considered ornamental. Especially good choice for small gardens, for tubs, or as specimen trees.

Deciduous flowering tree or shrub

Outstanding Feature: Flowers

Form: Rounded to oval crown

Growth Rate:

Bloom: Terminal panicles four to twelve inches long of small creamy-white to creamy-yellow fragrant flowers in late spring to early summer

Size: 15-30’ H x 10-25’ W

Light: Full sun; protect from strong wind.

Soil: Organically rich, moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 3-7

Care: Remove inflorescences after flowering.

Pests and Diseases: None of significance

Propagation: Stem cuttings, seeds

Outstanding Selections: ‘Ivory Silk’ (begins flowering at 5’ tall)

By Karen