Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map!

How to Treat a Mock Orange Tree for Winter

By Hollan Johnson ; Updated September 21, 2017

The mock orange is a deciduous flowering shrub that is native to Europe, according to the University of Illinois. It grows in full sun with well-drained, moist soil, and it can handle alkaline soil. Hardy to USDA Zones 4 through 8, the mock orange grows to about 10 to 12 feet tall and 10 to 12 feet wide. It flowers in the spring with white or pink blooms, depending on the variety. Come winter, this shrub will need some protecting if you live in a cold area.

Prune the mock orange in late summer. Remove any dead, damaged or diseased foliage. Allow the rest of the leaves to die back naturally during the fall.

Water the mock orange well before the ground freezes. Keep the ground wet but not soaking until it freezes over for the winter. According to the University of Minnesota, wet ground is warmer than dry ground and will help protect the shrub from the cold.

Mulch around the base of the mock orange. Place a 4 to 5 inch layer of mulch around the base of shrub before the ground freezes. This will help keep the mock orange’s roots warm during the cold winter months.

Cover the mock orange shrub with a sheet on the coldest nights. Drape the sheet over the shrub in the evening and remove it early the next morning.


Things You Will Need

  • Mulch
  • Pruners
  • Sheet


  • Do not fertilize your mock orange late in the summer or during the fall. The shrub needs to slow its growth and prepare for winter.

About the Author


Hollan Johnson is a freelance writer and contributing editor for many online publications. She has been writing professionally since 2008 and her interests are travel, gardening, sewing and Mac computers. Prior to freelance writing, Johnson taught English in Japan. She has a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics from the University of Las Vegas, Nevada.