Introducing...

Philadelphus

Common name: Mock orange

In early summer, this shrub offers a bountiful backdrop to roses and pretty herbaceous plantings with their foaming white flowers and heavy scent.

Looks

Mainly tall, sometimes arching, shrubs with richly-scented flowers in early summer. Although usually pure white and cup-shaped, some flowers have a maroon central blotch or are double-flowered. If you have a smaller plot, there are several low arching cultivars, ideal to spill over the front of a border. Plants have only one main spell of flowering in early summer. These shrubs are deciduous, shedding their leaves in winter.

Likes

Philadelphus are tolerant of most soils in full sun or light shade. Yellow-leaved Philadelphus coronarius ‘Aureus’ needs a little from strong sun.

Dislikes

They dislike very heavy, permanently wet soils. By avoiding poor, dry soils or deep shade, plants will be more vigorous and floriferous.

Did you know?

You can clip over Philadelphus coronarius ‘Aureus’ immediately after the flowers have faded to encourage a fresh crop of bright golden-yellow leaves – older leaves turn to green in summer.

Growing guide

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.