Lilac Bushes & Insects


With its beautiful flowers and wonderful fragrance, the lilac bush is a wonderful addition to any garden. You need to be careful, however, because insects are attracted to this bush.

Aphids and Borers

  • Aphids and borers are insects that bother the lilac bush by feeding on the leaves. This occurs mostly during the summer season.

Carpenter Ants and Yellow Jackets

  • Carpenter ants and yellow jackets (wasps) are attracted to the lilac bush because of its sap and the honeydew, which is excreted by aphids. Carpenter ants and yellow jackets suck the honeydew and chew on the leaves.


  • You can clearly tell if you have an insect problem in your lilac bush. The leaves will be chewed, curled, discolored and dying.


  • A soapy water solution or mild insecticide sprayed directly on the affected areas will kill most minor insect problems. Spray lilac bushes approximately two times per week until you no longer see the insect problem and its effects.


  • Pruning, cutting the branches back, is an important part of lilac care that helps prevent and treat plant disease and insect problems.

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  • Photo Credit Image by, courtesy of Matti Mattila
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