Thursday, 30 June 2016

Some factors affecting longevity of cut lilacs

Volume 111, January 2016, Pages 247–255


Vase life of cut lilac was tested in different solutions and flowering conditions.
A date of flowering of the cut lilac affected the inflorescence longevity.
Tyloses were formed in xylem vessels of cut lilacs in all tested solutions.
Formation of tyloses was not directly related to postharvest life of lilacs.
Lilac vase life is mitigated by preservatives irrespective of stem obstructions.


Short vase life of cut lilac stems limits its commercial potential. Rapid wilting of cut lilac inflorescences is probably caused by blockage of water transport in stems. The purpose of this study was to recognize the nature of the occlusions blocking xylem vessels in cut stems of common lilac and to identify a relationship, if any, between the type of a holding solution, xylem blockages and vase life of lilacs flowering under different environmental conditions. The stems of the white flowering cultivar “Mme Florent Stepman” were harvested in Nov/Dec from shrubs forced from the beginning of November by a standard procedure involving treatment with 37 °C, in January from shrubs forced from the beginning of November under 15 °C, and in May from control shrubs, i.e., flowering naturally in the field. Cut stems were placed in distilled water, 8-HQC, a standard preservative composed of 8-HQC + 2% sucrose, nanosilver and nanosilver + 2% sucrose. Tyloses were observed in stem xylem vessels while practically no microorganisms were detectable. The incidence of blockage formation in the stems depended on the flowering date and the biocide used. The longest vase life was observed in January with 8-HQC or 8-HQC + S, but in all flowering periods the least xylem blockages were formed when NS was used as the biocide. Therefore, formation of tyloses does not appear to be directly related to the postharvest life of lilac and its vase life can be extended by standard florists’ preservatives irrespective of their effect of the xylem physical obstructions.


  • 8-HQC, 8-hydroxyquinoline citrate;
  • NS, nanosilver;
  • S, sucrose;
  • WU, water uptake;
  • RFW, relative fresh weight


  • Tyloses;
  • Vessel blockage;
  • Senescence;
  • Syringa vulgaris
Corresponding author.