Philadelphus 'Belle Etoile'

Tried and Trouble-free Recommended by 2 Professionals
Common Name: mock orange
Type: Deciduous shrub
Family: Hydrangeaceae
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 5.00 to 6.00 feet
Spread: 3.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: May to June
Bloom Description: White with maroon blotch
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Tolerate: Drought, Clay Soil


Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to light shade. Tolerates a wide range of soils except poorly-drained ones. Prefers moist, organically rich soils. Flowers appear on prior year’s growth, so prune as needed immediately after flowering. May be cut to the ground (also just after flowering) if shrub becomes scraggly, unkempt or otherwise in need of rejuvenation.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Philadelphus is a genus of about 40 species of deciduous shrubs commonly called mockoranges from Eastern Europe to the Himalayas, East Asia and North and Central America. They are grown for their fragrant flowers.

Genus name honors Ptolemy II Philadelphus, Macedonian king of Egypt from 285 to 246 B.C.

Common name refers to the sweetly fragrant flowers which, in single-flowered form, generally resemble orange blossoms.

'Belle Etoile' is a deciduous shrub that grows 5-6' tall. Features fragrant, four-petaled, single white flowers (to 1.5" diameter) with maroon center blotches which appear in clusters (racemes) in late spring. Oval leaves (to 2" long).


No serious insect or disease problems. Some susceptibility to leaf spot, canker, powdery mildew and rust. Aphids, nematodes, scale and leaf miners are occasional visitors.

Garden Uses

Foundation plantings, hedges, shrub borders or low screens. This shrub has minimal ornamental interest when not in flower.