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Four-petaled white flowers with yellow stamens of Blizzard mockorange
Single flower of ‘Blizzard’ mockorange

(Philadelphus spp.) is a fragrant, white-flowering shrub native to Europe, Canada and the western and northwestern United states.

Grown for its fragrant spring flowers, mockorange are used as specimen plants and in groupings for borders and screens.

They provide spring interest when they produce a profusion of fragrant flowers that smell like orange blossoms.

Blizzard mockorange shrub has a rounded shape with white flowers
‘Blizzard’ mockorange


  • 2 to 10 feet in mature height

  • 2 to 10 feet in mature width

  • Deciduous

  • Oval or rounded plant form

  • Medium growth rate

  • 1- to 2-inch, white, sweetly-fragrant, four-petaled flowers in June; cultivars with double flowers have 8-30 petals

  • Small, non-ornamental, 4-valved woody seed capsules

Dark green leaves on a branch of mockorange
Dark green mockorange leaves

Growing mockorange

White pointed flowers with visible yellow stamens of ‘Buckley’s Quill’ mockorange
Quill-like flowers of ‘Buckley’s Quill’ mockorange
  • Hardiness zone: 3 to 8 depending on cultivar

  • Full sun to light shade; best bloom occurs in full sun

  • Adaptable to sandy, loam, or clay soils

  • Moist, well-drained soil; avoid wet soils with poor drainage

  • Soil pH 4.0 - 7.0, but tolerates higher pH; Have your soil tested by the U of M Soil Testing Lab

Needs occasional pruning to maintain an attractive shape. Prune immediately after blooming ends. 

Common problems

  • No serious pests and stresses

  • Japanese beetle tolerant

See What's wrong with my plant? – Mockorange for a list of the most common mockorange pests in Minnesota.

Many-petaled white flowers of ‘Snowbelle’ mockorange
Double flower of ‘Snowbelle’ mockorange

Cultivated varieties of mockorange for Minnesota

Mockorange cultivated varieties can vary in plant characteristics including flower size and fragrance, growth habit, leaf color and plant hardiness.

Recommended cultivars for Minnesota include:

  • 'Aureus' - 6 feet tall by 5 feet wide, gold spring foliage, fragrant single flowers, compact growth

    Yellow-green leaves and white, four-petaled flowers of golden mockorange
    Flowers and yellow spring foliage of golden mockorange (‘Aureus’)
  • 'Blizzard' - 5 feet tall by 3 feet wide, fragrant single flowers in clusters, compact growth, good winter hardiness

  • Buckley's Quill' - 6 feet tall by 4 feet wide, fragrant double flowers

  • 'Miniature Snowflake' - 3 feet tall by 2 feet wide, very fragrant double flowers, dwarf / compact growth

  • 'Minnesota Snowflake' - 8 feet tall by 6 feet wide, fragrant double flowers

  • 'Snowbelle' - 4 feet tall by 4 feet wide, very fragrant double flowers, compact growth

  • First Editions®Snow White™ - 6 feet tall by 5 feet wide, fragrant double flowers in clusters, repeat bloom in spring and summer

Beth Berlin, former Extension educator; Kathy Zuzek, former Extension educator; and Julie Weisenhorn, Extension educator

Reviewed in 2018

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