The 8th wedding anniversary flower and the state flower of New Hampshire, lilacs are frequently considered a harbinger of spring, with the time of their bloom signaling whether spring will be early or late. In the language of flowers, purple lilacs symbolize the first emotions of love, while white lilacs represent youthful innocence.
While lilacs can be used as filler to add color, they are also pretty enough to stand on their own. Aside from roses, there is no flower as beautiful and aromatic as lilacs. Of the two, lilacs have a stronger scent that carries quite a distance. Unfortunately, lilacs bloom for only a very brief couple of weeks in the spring. Lilacs bloom in seven official colors: white, violet, blue, lavender, pink, magenta, and purple, with many shades of each.
Lilacs in the United States date back to the mid 1750's. They were grown in America's first botanical gardens and were popular in New England. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew them in their gardens. Lilac bushes can live for hundreds of years, so a bush planted at that time may still be around. Lilacs originated from Europe and Asia, with the majority of natural varieties coming from Asia. In Europe, lilacs came from the Balkans, France, and Turkey.
Season: spring; imported French lilacs are available year-round
Colors: white, violet, blue, lavender, pink, magenta, and purple
Scent: very fragrant
Meaning: love's first emotions