Lilacs in the South?
You bet. If you are a transplant, missing that glorious, "old-fashioned" spring time favorite, try the variety 'Miss Kim'. Originally from Korea, it will grow more compact than those French favorites. In fact, it will only grow 6 - 8 feet. It has a single bloom and can easily be used in smaller gardens and as foundation plantings.
Try it for zones 3 - 8.
Definitely hardy and easily grown.
Emily: Can I move my Lilac south with me?
Dear Emily: I live in central FL and just return from vacation in Rochester NY, and brought back with me lilac runners from my mothers bushes. I have them in a pot inside with the air conditioning, in a sunny window. They are doing well right now, but I would like to move them outdoors and eventually into the ground. I am concerned about the Fl climate being too hot for this plant, and the effects of the mild winters will have on flowering. Do you have any advice for my situation?
A: I too have enjoyed those lilacs in Rochester NY. There is a reason they perform so nicely there and that is the 'cold factor' needed through the winter.
You are correct in thinking about the hot summers and mild winters that Florida provides. I suspect you may be able to have your tree 'survive' but not 'thrive'. Planting it outside might be a mistake. It may do ok for a few seasons but I am afraid in the end it just will not perform like upstate NY and sadly may die.