The generic name is derived from the Greek word syrinx, meaning a shepherd’s flute made of hollow twigs. The name is of fairly recent origin and is not exactly fitting, as lilacs do not have hollow twigs. The genus comprises some 25 species of deciduous shrubs or small trees growing to a height of 10m (33 ft). The leaves are simple, very occasionally pinnate. Theare borne in terminal or lateral panicles on the previous year’s shoots. Each flower consists of four sepals and corolla with four petals that join to form a tube at the base. There are two stamens, and the fruit is a capsule.
Syringa prestoniae is a hybrid between Spiraea reflexa and Spiraea villosa raised in the United States. It is a shrub of vigorous growth with large panicles of pink, unscented flowers appearing later than those of other lilacs — namely from the middle till the end of June.
Lilacs require a fairly nourishing, preferably heavier than light, loamy and moist, but not , and are intolerant of drought. They appreciate an occasional application of good compost. A light, sunny location is necessary for abundant flowering since they flower poorly in shade. They are fully hardy.