Miss Kim Manchurian lilac produces abundant and fragrant pale lavender blossoms, which fade to an icy light blue on a dense, compact plant. It is the most readily available and planted lilac for the home garden. There are more than 200 Miss Kim lilacs at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
Members of the genus Syringa, commonly known as lilacs, are shrubs or small trees prized for their showy and fragrant blooms in late spring. The individual flowers are tubular in form and are borne in large panicles. While the common name of the plant has come to define a shade of pale purple, some species and hybrids have pink or white blossoms. Lilacs begin to set buds for the following year shortly after they finish blooming; if pruning is desired, it should be done immediately after flowering to maintain flower production the next year.
Lilacs are native to cooler temperate areas of southeastern Europe and eastern Asia with winter temperatures below freezing; there are no lilacs native to North America. The genus includes at least 12 species and numerous hybrids and cultivars. The Chicago Botanic Garden's collection contains over 50 varieties of lilac and more than 800 plants.