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Philadelphus


This genus of Saxifragaceae is composed of deciduous flowering shrubs, all of which are desirable subjects for large or small gardens. About fifteen or sixteen species are in cultivation, natives of Asia and North America, one species, Philadelphus Mexicanus, being found in South America. All bear conspicuous white flowers, the majority being powerfully scented and bearing some resemblance to Orange blossom; hence the common name of Mock Orange which is applied to some of the species.

The larger growers are suitable for specimen plants or for the shrubbery, while no better subjects exist for specimen beds than some of the dwarf species and hybrids. Rich, loamy soil is necessary to ensure the best results, though they will make satisfactory progress in ordinary soil. Cuttings of soft shoots root freely indoors in July, while ripened wood will root out of doors in winter.

The taller growers should be thinned after the flowers are over. The dwarf growing hybrid, Philadelphus Lemoinei, however, should have all flowering wood cut away to strong, young, basal shoots as soon as the flowers are over. A good topĀ­dressing of rotten dung annually will be found beneficial. The following are the most useful for allround work:

Philadelphus coronarius, the Mock Orange.

Philadelphus grandiflorus is a strong growing shrub, 15 feet high, introduced from the southern United States in 1811. The flowers are very large and produced in June. The varieties floribundus and laxus are very floriferous.

Philadelphus Lemoinei is a hybrid between Philadelphus microphyllus and Philadelphus coronarius. It grows 3 feet high, and blossoms very freely. The variety erectus is superior to the type.

Philadelphus Lewisii is a strong growing, free flowerer from Western North America.

Philadelphus microphyllus is a dwarf grower from Colorado, with small leaves, and blossoms 1 inch across. It forms a very nice bed. Good hybrids are Boule d'Argent, Candelabra, Gerbe de Neige, and Lemoinei erectus.