How Can I Get My Mock Orange Plant to Flower?

Q: I planted a mock orange plant last summer in Logan Lake, B.C. (a zone 3 climate). There were no blooms the first year and I kept it covered during the winter. It survived and is growing well, with nice shiny leaves, but it hasn’t yet flowered.

Do you know what I am doing wrong?

“Mock Orange” (Philadelphus cv.) requires a very sunny location. Flowers are usually produced on the previous year’s (non-flowering) branches. Soil fertility and soil should be average.

There are numerous cultivars of mock orange listed, usually rated to about zone 4. Winterkill on flower buds is possible without damaging the plant itself. Some winter-hardy cultivars include our native mock orange (Philadelphus lewisii ‘Waterton’ or ‘Blizzard’) or P. x virginalis ‘Minnesota Snowflake’, rated to zone3.