New Hampshire State Flower
Purple Lilac (common name)
Syringa vulgaris (scientific name)
Though lilacs are actually a European import, they were chosen as New Hampshire’s state flower in 1919 because they're found on tough, hardy shrubs that thrive in difficult conditions, much like the residents of New Hampshire. The bushes are sometimes hardy to -35°C and can grow in many different types of soil. Lilacs bloom in spring. The flowers are tiny, but grow in long, pointed, or conical panicles 6–8 inches long, making them very noticeable. They’re also usually fragrant. Each flower has fertile stamens and a stigma. In New Hampshire, lilacs usually bloom the last two weeks of May, but different varieties sometimes bloom a little earlier or later.
The plants are very long-lived, and it’s not uncommon to find lilac bushes that are 100 years old. Occasionally a lilac bush might have a very thick trunk, but most are made up of upright stems growing up out of the ground. New Hampshire specifies purple lilacs as the state flower, but white and pink-flowered varieties also exist, as well more exotic colors such as yellow and burgundy. Leaves are usually a matte medium-green and pointed. Seeds grow in smooth, brown capsules, which produce two seeds each. Syringa vulgaris can grow from seed and are normally big enough to bloom three to five years after planting. Most gardeners prefer to cut their plants back immediately after they bloom so that they bloom well the next year.
Plant: Shrub or small tree
Mature Height: 6.5–33 ft (2–10 m) tall
Flowering: May through June
Flowers: .2–.4 in (.5–1 cm) wide, .2–.8 in (.5–2 cm) long with a four-lobed corolla and narrow corolla tube
Flower Color: Medium to very light purple
Leaves: 2–5 in (5–12.7 cm) long medium green pointed ovals
Fruit/Seed Color: Brown
Location: Prefers sun, cool weather, and moderate moisture
Range: Northeastern to central U.S. and Canada, plus South Dakota, Kansas, Colorado, Utah, Oregon
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|Author: World Trade Press|