Mock orange (garden jasmine)

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The mock orange flower, or garden jasmine (Philadelphus), of the Hydrangeaceae family, is not even related to the true jasmine (Jasminum) from the Olive family (Oleaceae). Despite this, mock orange (garden jasmine) is so common in the backyards of the middle lane that it deserves special mention.

We bring to your attention a story about this beautiful plant, in which you can familiarize yourself with the description of the mock orange, learn about the types and varieties of mock orange, bred by breeding, get recommendations on planting and caring for mock orange, and see photos of garden jasmine – a real decoration of your garden.

We bring to your attention a story about this beautiful plant, in which you can familiarize yourself with the description of the mock orange, learn about the types and varieties of mock orange, bred by breeding, get recommendations on planting and caring for mock orange, and see photos of garden jasmine – a real decoration of your garden.

Description of the mock orange plant (Philadelphus)

Garden jasmine flower got its name from gardeners for the similarity of aromas of snow-white flowers and is found under it in old books. The scientific name “mock orange” was given to him because his shoots were used to make chibouks of smoking pipes. However, gardeners still lovingly call him jasmine. And, it seems to us, in a conversation about plant hits, it is more logical to recall the old name, since it was precisely for the abundant flowering of snow-white flowers exuding a wonderful aroma that flower growers fell in love with it so much that the old Russian garden was unthinkable without its bushes.

All garden jasmines are deciduous shrubs with straight trunks covered with thin gray bark. They vary in height from dwarf varieties (70 cm) to tall powerful bushes growing up to 6 m. The leaves are simple, oblong-ovate or broadly ovate, 2 to 7 cm long, pubescent in some species. The white flowers of the mock orange plant are collected in brushes and are formed at the ends of short young shoots. They can be simple with 4-5 concave petals, semi-double and double. Not all species and varieties have a strong aroma, are with a weak, subtle smell and are completely odorless. Jasmine garden blooms for about two to three weeks. If you pick up the types and varieties of mock orange with different flowering periods, then white “clouds” will envelop the garden for almost two months – from June to early August.

When choosing and purchasing mock orange (Philadelphus) for your garden, you should remember that not all jasmines and their varieties are able to endure our winters. Since the planting material, as a rule, is imported and the main assortment is made up of classic French varieties, caution should be exercised. In particularly severe winters, even fairly winter-hardy varieties and species can freeze to the level of snow cover.

Types and varieties of mock orange

More than ten types of mock orange are known to breeders. In central Russia, in early June, the coronal mock orange (Ph. coronarius) begins to bloom. This is a winter-hardy tall (up to 3 m) shrub with straight shoots, blooming with medium-sized simple fragrant creamy-white flowers, collected in a brush of 5-7 pieces.

There are decorative forms:

golden (Ph. p. var. aureus),

variegated (Ph. p. var. variegata),

dwarf (Ph. p. var. nanus), etc.

On its basis, various varieties have been bred.

The most popular and widespread is “Virginal” (“Virginal”) – a tall shrub up to 2.5 m high, blooming with large double white flowers with a delicate aroma.

Then flowering is picked up by various species and varieties. One of the first to bloom is a fine-leaved h. (Ph. tenuifolius), a shrub more than 2 m high, and its forms: multi-flowered (multiflora) with large racemes of inflorescences of 9-11 weakly aromatic flowers and dentate (dentata) with expressive serrated leaves.

Simultaneously with the thin-leaved tea tree, Schrenk’s mock orange (Ph.schrenkii) blooms, which is distinguished by a strong aroma and a very long flowering.

Hybrids of mock orange and their photos

Ch. Lemoine (Ph. x lemoinei), very popular in the west, a hybrid of the crown and small-leaved mock orange, which gave life to a large number of varieties, is much less common in our country.

A great contribution to the selection of garden jasmine was made by the famous French gardener Lemoine, who, in fact, made them popular, and the varieties he bred still form the basis of the world assortment. Unfortunately, many of them are not winter-hardy enough in the conditions of central Russia. They were mainly widely cultivated in the more southern regions, although fans of these varieties could be found in the temperate zone.

Chubushnik “Avalanche”

Many of them received Russian names (usually derived from translation), under which they were distributed.

Look at the photo of the Avalanche (Avalanche) mock orange, known as Avalanche.

This variety is also known as “Strawberry”, as it has a pleasant strawberry aroma. Mock orange “Avalanche” prefers to be planted closer to the windows in order to enjoy a pleasant, fresh smell during flowering.

The mock orange variety “Manteau d’Hermine” (“Manto d’Ermine”) is popular as “Ermine Mantle”, “Bouquet Blanche” (“Bouquet Blanche”) is known as “White Bouquet”.

Many lovers, fascinated by unusual snow-white flowers with a pink-purple center and bright golden anthers of stamens, dream of having in the garden:

“Sybille” (“Sibyl”),

“Bicolore” (“Bicolor”),

“Beauclerk” (“Boklerk”),

“Belle Etoile” (“Belle Etoile”).

Pink mock oranges, as the sellers dubbed them. Alas, these are also not plants for gardens in the middle lane.

However, there are varieties of Lemoine that can withstand our climate. “Glacier” (“Gletcher”) is an upright shrub up to 2-5 m high. It blooms profusely with large creamy white densely fragrant flowers.

Mock orange “Mont Blanc”

Mock orange “Mont Blanc” (“Mont Blanc”) got its name not for its size, but for the snow-white cap that covers the bush during flowering.

The flowers are large (up to 5 cm), terry, with the aroma of strawberries; are located in short brushes along the entire length of the shoots, which creates a “snow top”. Bushes 1.5-2 m high.

Photo of mock orange of various varieties with descriptions

Mock orange “Pyramidal” (“Pyramidal”) usually completes the flowering of jasmine varieties. It blooms with white large (up to 5 cm) semi-double flowers with a weak aroma. The bushes are wide and tall (up to 3 m).

But we were lucky. In recent years, the varieties of our outstanding breeder, Professor N.K. Vekhov, which are deservedly gaining popularity among gardeners and landscape designers, have become more and more accessible.

Mock orange “Ballet motylkov” (“Balet motylkov”), which for inexplicable reasons turned into “Flight of the Moths” in many articles. Pay attention to the photo of the mock orange of this charming variety: over a wide bush up to 3 m high, “moth” flowers “flutter”, semi-double greenish petals of which create the illusion of a night butterfly. In the absence of enthusiastic romanticism, read: the flower is semi-double, odorless.

The Vosduschny desant cultivar of mock orange blooms with simple, medium-sized, drooping, domed, creamy-white flowers, which reminded the author of the parachutes of an airborne assault force filling the sky. The flowers have a strong strawberry scent. Pyramid-shaped bush over 3 m high.

A very popular variety of mock orange “Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya” (“Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya”), which has peculiar large double flowers with a slightly greenish tint and a faint smell. But in order to appreciate the flowers, a bush up to 2 m high should be planted nearby, then it will be possible to consider them.

Mock orange “Karlik” (“Karlik”), due to abundant branching, forms a very dense, well-leafed spherical bush 0.5 m high. Possibly weak flowering with small white flowers.

Mock orange “Moonlight” (“Lunnyi Svet”) – a variety, double greenish-cream flowers, which, with a delicate strawberry aroma, seem to really radiate moonlight. The bushes are low (up to 1 m).

Variety “Unusual” (“Neobychnyi”) is unusual in that the dream of flower growers about the “pink” mock orange can become a reality. The center of the flower fascinates with a pink blush. The aroma is not strong, subtle. The bush is graceful, straight, with dark red shoots, up to 1.5 m high. Unlike its French counterparts, the variety is quite winter-hardy.

“Snowballs” (“Snezhki”) – the variety blooms very profusely with simple white fragrant cup-shaped flowers, collected in dense multi-flowered inflorescences resembling snowballs. Blooms early, bushes 1.2-1.6 m high.

“Snowstorm” (“Snezhnaya burya”) is a profusely flowering shrub, in which leaves are almost invisible during flowering. The flowers are white, double, medium size, in inflorescences of 7-15 pieces. The height of the bush reaches 2 m.

“Elbrus” (“Elbrus”) – a spectacular sprawling shrub 1.5 m high, covered during flowering with a creamy-white cap of double, odorless flowers in dense multi-flowered inflorescences. Interestingly, flowering bushes in different breeders evoke the same associations with mountain peaks.

“Minnesota Snowflake” (“Minnesota Snowflake”) blooms with white double fragrant flowers in small inflorescences. Bushes upright up to 2 m high.

“Schneesturm” (Shneeshturm”) – a large shrub 2.5 m high with a crown diameter of 2 m. It blooms profusely with white double large flowers.>

Flower garden jasmine from the Vekhov fund

From the hybrid fund of N.K. Vekhov, enthusiasts identified several more interesting varieties of garden jasmine, giving the flowers “Russian” names. Of course, one of the varieties is deservedly named in memory of this person.

Mock orange “Pamyat o Vehove” (“Pamyat o Vehove”) is probably the only “yellow” variety among jasmines. The flowers are rich cream in color, very large (6cm), double. The aroma is weak. Bushes up to 1.5 m high.

Chubushnik “Pearl” (“Zhemchug”). Terry, fragrant, very large garden jasmine flowers of this variety are similar to the Memory of Vekhov variety, but they are white with a pearly sheen. The bushes are low (up to 1.5 m) with reddish curved shoots.

“Chamomile” (“Romashka”) stands out with peculiar flowers that make it unlike any other variety. An almost flat flower with narrow long petals resembles a chamomile. Bushes are small, up to 1 m high.

In addition to Lemuan and Vekhi varieties, other hybrids are often found on sale.

The fluffy mock orange (Ph. pubescens) completes flowering, ending it in early August. It got its name from the leaves that are pubescent on the underside. The variety is also attractive with slightly odorous flowers, in which orange-yellow anthers stand out brightly against the background of creamy petals of a bell-shaped flower.

Planting and caring for mock orange

Mock orange is planted in sunny places, flowering weakens in partial shade. Although jasmine is considered to be unpretentious, this does not mean that they are able to grow and bloom anywhere. They do not tolerate heavy clay soils with stagnant moisture, and places with a high level of groundwater are not suitable for them. Plants prefer loose fertile soils. In order for the planting and care of the mock orange to be effective, rotted manure or compost must be introduced into the planting pits. On heavy soils, sand is added, and at the bottom of the pit it is useful to arrange drainage from crushed stone and sand with a layer of 20-25 cm.

Cultivation of mock orange

Plants should be fed annually with organic or mineral fertilizers. In the spring, a complex mineral fertilizer is applied or watered two or three times with slurry (1: 10). Cultivation of mock orange involves mandatory feeding after flowering with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers. Or for these purposes, superphosphate (20-30 g) and potassium sulfate (15-20 g) are used. It is useful to add 100-150 g of wood ash. Jasmines are demanding on moisture, in dry weather they need watering. For long and abundant flowering during the period of budding and flowering, the soil must contain a sufficient amount of moisture. It is useful to mulch plantings.

Pruning mock orange

With age, the bushes thicken greatly, and the shoots become bare. This reduces the decorativeness of the plant and weakens flowering. To avoid this, after flowering, the mock orange should be pruned, removing the young shoots that thicken the bush. Every year in the spring, sanitary pruning is performed, removing shoots broken in winter, and every two to three years, part of the old five six-year-old shoots is removed to rejuvenate the bush.

Mock orange in the garden and landscape design

In the old gardens, most often grown was black crown or its variety “Virginal” (“Virginal”), which were planted either in a hedge or near an arbor or terrace so that one could enjoy their aroma. The optimal mock orange in court for backstage is the variety “Aureus” (“Aureus”) with a height of more than 2 m due to the golden color of the leaves. This use is still relevant today, but due to the availability of various varieties for sale, other cultivars can be used.

Tall species and varieties are good for planting backgrounds, while medium-sized and undersized ones ask for flower beds.

So, the varieties “Balletmoths”, “Minnesota Snowflake”, “Mont Blanc” will decorate the middle and background of the flower garden during flowering, and the varieties “Unusual” or “Chamomile” should be located close to the foreground so that you can admire the original color of the first and unusual shape of the second flower.

The choice of partner plants for jasmine is practically unlimited, since the soil requirements are common for most garden plants, and the white color of the flowers and their abundance will highlight flowers of any other color. Dark-colored flowers with an interesting shape look especially good against their background. So, exotic “spurs” of soaring aquilegias will be especially expressive, and slender colossi of lupins will well complement varieties with undersized bushes.

Varieties “Unusual” (with flowers with a pink spot in the center), Memory of Vekhov (with cream flowers) and “Moonlight” (with greenish-cream ones) are best planted in diffuse partial shade, where these shades and nuances will be noticeable. In the bright sun, the color of the flowers of the latter will be perceived as white, and the pink spot of the “Unusual” flower will not stand out so noticeably.

N.K. Vekhov wrote about the use of two non-flowering varieties in the landscape design of mock oranges – “Dwarf” and “Gnome”: “Dwarf jasmine is especially good as dark green buttons at the corners of the lawn, attaching it to the ground.” Although these decorative leafy varieties can be used in flower beds as green “bumps” and to create borders.

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