The Q&A Archives: Mock Orange Tree

Question: I have what was labeled a "mock orange tree". It was supposed to have a wonderful scent but it has never bloomed. It is now 5 years old. I would like to know when it will bloom and need some way to identify if it really is one - a picture perhaps.

Thank you very much for any and all info or help you can give me. I have looked high and low for info.

Answer: Mockorange shrubs (Philadelphus coronarius) are an old time favorite for their fragrant blooms. The most common reason for this plant to fail to bloom is improper pruning. The plant blooms on old wood from the previous year, so pruning should only be done immediately after flowering, which would normally be in June.

Mock orange, in my experience is a long lived and well loved old garden favorite and yet it can be slow to come into flower as a young plant. They prefer sun and a decent soil, bloom for about a week, and then take care of themselves for the rest of the year.

Since it sounds like your plant is otherwise healthy and doing well, I think I would just sit tight for another year or two! The fragrance should be worth the wait.

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