Plants - Trees and Shrubs

Enjoy the sweet fragrance of a mock orange

By
Anne Marie Van Nest

Discover new cultivars of this easygoing, old-fashioned favourite


Perfect partners
Vines that scramble through mock oranges, and shrubs that flower at different times, help extend the blooming season.

  • Golden clematis (Clematis tangutica) Zone 3
  • Glossy abelia (Abelia x grandiflora) Zone 5
  • PJM rhododendron (Rhododendron PJM Group) Zone 4
  • ‘Nanho Purple’ butterfly bush (Buddleja davidii ‘Nanho Purple’) Zone 5

Designing with mock oranges

Good cold hardiness and tolerance of a range of cultural conditions make mock oranges versatile shrubs for difficult areas with poor soil or part shade. Sited beside arbours and trellises, varieties such as ‘Snowbelle’ provide a visual transition between tall structures and shorter groundcover plants.

  • Although more commonly planted as a single specimen, taller varieties, such as ‘Belle Etoile’, set in a row half a metre apart, will form a hedge or screen.
  • Take advantage of their heavenly scent by planting mock orange shrubs close to windows, walkways and sitting areas.
  • Accentuate the colour of golden-leafed varieties such as ‘Yellow Cab’ by planting them in front of darker backgrounds; for example, a forest green or deep-blue fence, or the purple leaves of ‘Diabolo’ ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Diabolo’).
  • Compensate for mock orange’s short bloom period and dull foliage by training a clematis vine to climb through its branches, adding colour and texture. —Sara Katz, Wild at Heart Design, Toronto


Photo shown is a Starbright Mock Orange courtesy of President's Choice.

 

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