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Jennifer Bennett has lived "lilac country" for more than 20 years, and is well placed to appreciate the lilac, which not only flourishes in cultivated gardens but roams wild across the countryside. Tracing the journey of a plant that will "grow well everywhere, in every soil," from its origins in Asia through Europe and the United Kingdom to North America some 250 years ago, Bennett brings this most familiar and glorious of flowers to vibrant life.
The lilac's bloom is a sign of spring everywhere, but a lesser-known fact is that its emerging flowers are also used as indicators by farmers planning pest control and crop plantings and by scientists engaged in charting global warming. Filled with uncommon information about this common plant, Bennett's book features chapters on its history; planning, planting and pruning; the lilac's place in the landscape, whether alone, in groupings or with perennials; a species list of usual and unusual plants, with names that range from 'Charles Lindbergh' and 'Martha Stewart' to 'Charm' and 'Glory'; exotic lilacs for the adventurous connoisseur; and lilac aid, which addresses one of gardening's most vexing questions: "Why won't it bloom?"
Lilacs for the Garden is a compendium of essential information for all who cherish this most resonant of garden companions. Whether you seek detail on plant requirements, mulching, grafting, fertilizing, multiplication, bloom time, fragrance, abiotic and biotic stresses, renovating neglected lilacs or a list of recommended species and where to find them, Bennett's latest book is an essential resource.
Pretty much everything you needed to know about lilacs. The author covers the history of various types of lilacs, significant lilac cultivators, and there's even a troubleshooting guide for lilac problems.
But this book is worth buying just for the dozens of photos alone. I never knew that there were so many different types of lilacs.