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Josee Lilac

Syringa hybrid ‘MORjos 060F'

Josee Lilac

Syringa hybrid ‘MORjos 060F'

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How are the heights measured?

All tree, and nothin' but the tree! We measure from the top of the soil to the top of the tree; the height of the container or the root system is never included in our measurements.

What is a gallon container?

Nursery containers come in a variety of different sizes, and old-school nursery slang has stuck. While the industry-standard terminology is to call the sizes "Gallon Containers", that doesn't exactly translate to the traditional liquid "gallon" size we think of. You'll find we carry young 1-gallons, up to more mature 7-gallons ranging anywhere from 6 inches to 6ft.

How does the delivery process work?

All of our orders ship via FedEx Ground! Once your order is placed online, our magic elves get right to work picking, staging, boxing and shipping your trees. Orders typically ship out within 2 business days. You will receive email notifications along the way on the progress of your order, as well as tracking information to track your plants all the way to their new home!

Why are some states excluded from shipping?

The short & sweet answer is: "United States Department of Agriculture Restrictions." Every state has their own unique USDA restrictions on which plants they allow to come into their state. While we wish we could serve everyone, it's for the safety of native species and helps prevent the spread of invasive disease & pests. We've gotta protect good ole' Mother Nature, after all.

About Me

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The Josée™ Lilac is a repeat-blooming hybrid Chinese lilac with beautiful fragrant blooms on a compact, rounded bush. The tight branching and small leaves make it very neat, and growing no more than 6 feet tall and wide it is perfect for smaller gardens. The abundant blossoms are a bright, lilac-pink, with the rich perfume only lilacs can bring. It blooms not only in spring, but in summer and fall too, with clusters of blooms perfect for vases, or to enjoy in the garden. Grow it in shrub beds, by doors and gates, or as an informal hedge or screen.

  • Repeat blooming, with periods of bloom in summer and fall
  • Heads of fragrant lilac-pink blossoms
  • Profuse blooming on a smaller bush
  • Very cold hardy, even in zone 3
  • Easy, low-maintenance, deer-resistant – but beautiful

Full sun will make the Josée™ Lilac bloom to the max, and it grows easily in almost any well-drained soils, including alkaline soils that other plants don’t enjoy. Richer soils, with regular watering, give the best results, but once established this plant is easy to grow, drought resistant and reliable. It normally has no pests or diseases, deer leave it alone, and it doesn’t even need pruning, unless you want to.

Plant Hardiness Zones 3-7
Mature Width 5-6
Mature Height 4-6
Soil Conditions Moist, Well-Drained Soil
Sunlight Full Sun
Drought Tolerance Moderate Drought Tolerance
Zones 3-7

If you live in cooler zones, lilacs are ‘must have’ shrubs for your garden. For a long time we mostly had the big, old-fashioned French lilacs, which form large bushes or small trees in time, and are often too big for today’s gardens. But lilacs come as smaller bushes too, and they have so much more to offer as shrubs for borders. Some, like the Josée™ Lilac, overcome the other criticism – they only bloom once a year – that lilacs often get. This fabulous variety blooms profusely in spring, bringing color and fragrance to your garden, and it also keeps blooming through summer and fall – not quite as profusely, but plenty to cut for a vase in the house, orto bury your nose in on a hot day in July. It’s neat and compact too, never growing above 6 feet tall and wide, so place it at the back of a bed, or where a path turns a corner, for a wonderful touch of beauty that keeps on giving.

Growing the Josée™ Lilac

Size and Appearance

The Josée Lilac is a compact deciduous shrub, with dense branching to the ground, that grows between 4 and 6 feet tall and around 6 feet wide. It has neat, broadly oval leaves no more than an inch or two in length, which are a bright mid-green. In fall they turn clear yellow, before falling to reveal the smooth gray bark along the stems. In spring, along with the new leaves, the flowers open. These are carried in long clusters, often made up of many smaller clusters along the stems. The display is bold and generous, with the bush smothered in delicious blooms, spreading wonderful perfume out across your garden.

The individual flowers are long tubes, opening to a short, flaring mouth. Each flower is small, but the profusion of them makes a bold impression. The color is a bright pink with lilac overtones – delightful and blending with many other garden colors. The blooms are popular with butterflies, and even with hummingbirds. After the spring bloom you can expect periods of bloom through summer and especially in fall – perfect to cut for a vase or enjoy out in the garden. Reblooming is most abundant in cooler zones with good moisture.

Using the Josée™ Lilac in Your Garden

With its compact size this beautiful lilac is perfect for smaller gardens, or for group planting in larger ones. Grow it to fill a corner of a bed or courtyard garden. Plant it along the back of smaller beds, or in the middle of larger ones. Plant it beside a path, next to a window (to enjoy the perfume) or beside a door or gate. Grow it too in wilder parts of your garden too, where it will be right at home. Spaced 3 to 4 feet apart it will make a lovely informal hedge, or hide an ugly fence. The possibilities are endless, and every garden has a place for this lovely bush.

Hardiness

Completely hardy in zone 3, this lilac is a gift for cold-zone gardeners, where choices are often limited. It also grows well in warmer zones and it tolerates quite a bit of heat, but not beyond zone 7.

Sun Exposure and Soil Conditions

Full sun is best to enjoy the full blooming of the Josée Lilac. It revels in warm sunny spots. It will grow in most ordinary well-drained garden soils, especially alkaline soils, which it enjoys the most. Add plenty of organic material when planting, and each spring as mulch, especially when it is young. Don’t plant in wet places.

Maintenance and Pruning

An annual mulch is useful, but not essential, and in very poor soil some fertilizer for flowering shrubs applied after the spring blooming is a good idea. The Josée Lilac rarely suffers from pests or diseases and it’s usually free of the powdery mildew that makes many French lilacs unattractive in summer. Deer normally don’t eat it, it needs very little attention, and pruning is strictly optional. If you do want to trim, it should only be done immediately after the spring blooming. Trimming later will prevent those valuable later flowers, and even reduce the blooms for the following spring. Removing spent flower heads is valuable in encouraging more blooms the next year. Doing this by hand is best, because if you shear the whole bush the rebloom will be reduced or delayed.

History and Origin of the Josée™ Lilac

Most lilacs are varieties of the common lilac, Syringa vulgaris. Josée Lilac has a very different background. It was created early in the 20th century by Françisque Morel, a French nurseryman and breeder from Lyon, France. He is most known for creating several Clematis which are still very popular today. He also worked with lilacs and he was an early grower of different Asian species. He started with different forms of Syringa pubescens, a lilac that grows in Korea and much of China, with small, open clusters of pale-lilac flowers. Several forms of this plant are found in different parts of its range, and Morel crossed together three of them – S. meyeri, S. microphylla, and S. patula). At the time these were thought to be 3 different species, but today we put them closer together, with each one as a subspecies of Syringa pubescens, although Syringa meyeri is still often treated as a separate species. Morel died in 1925 and the plant he created remained in his nursery. It wasn’t until 1974 that someone realized its beauty and potential and decided to release it for nurseries. It was named ‘MORjos 060F’, perhaps intending to patent it, and marketed it with the trademark name of Josée™.

Buying the Josée™ Lilac at the Tree Center

For something different and beautiful, the Josée Lilac is a great shrub. Perfect for colder zones and smaller gardens, you can enjoy the look and fragrance of lilacs not just in spring, but in summer and fall too – what’s not to like? But order now – this desirable variety is not often offered, and it won’t last in our nursery for long.

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Josee Lilac

Syringa hybrid ‘MORjos 060F'