Saturday 6 July 2013


Last year I pruned my Philadelphus (Mock Orange) tree very severely, because it had got very straggly. I wasn't expecting many flowers this year, because the flowers appear on older wood. however I did leave a few older branches, and these have duly produced a great display of blooms.

The flowers are very late this year though - several weeks behind their normal schedule. I always used to think of Philadelphus being a May-flowerer, but these days it seems to have slipped to mid- or late-June.

Last year my Philadelphus tree was attacked by the pigeons, who stripped off most of the fresh green leaf-shoots, leaving the tree looking very bare. Fortunately the pigeons seem to have forgotten this, and the attacks have not been repeated. I seem to be luckier than most gardeners when it comes to my relationship with pigeons. They very seldom do any damage at all. For instance I always grow plenty of brassicas, yet the pigeons never attack them. Just occasionally they do get a taste for something (e.g. Philadelphus!) and then they go mad for it. One year they were absolutely determined to eat my PSB, even though it was netted. They would land on top of the net, thereby weighing it down enough for them to be able to poke their beaks through and reach the PSB shoots.

Have you noticed the blue sky in many of my Philadelphus photos? Amazing, isn't it? We don't see so much of it these days, but just once in a while you get a perfect Summer's day...


  1. Glad you don't have too much trouble with pigeons. The pigeons and collared doves are decimating my brassicas more than ever this year. I have even had to re-cover some with protective fleece

  2. I have a double variety that is flowering now. I find pruning straight after the flowers fade means I don't forfeit next year's flowers.

  3. Very pretty blossoms. I wonder if the pigeons have some nutritional deficiency that makes them target specific plants at different times?


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