Can You Root Mock Orange In Water? A True Guide

Are you a gardening enthusiast looking for new ways to propagate your favorite plants? Have you ever wondered if rooting mock oranges in water is possible? Well, you’re in luck because today, we will explore this fascinating topic and determine if it’s viable for propagating mock orange plants.

Mock orange, or Philadelphus, is a beautiful flowering shrub that produces fragrant white flowers. Many gardeners are eager to expand their collection of mock oranges, and rooting in water could be a convenient and cost-effective method. In this article, we’ll delve into rooting mock oranges in water, discussing the necessary steps, and offering tips for success.

Can You Root Mock Orange In Water?

Yes, you can root mock orange in water. Mock orange is a hardy shrub with fragrant white flowers and can tolerate many soil types. It is often propagated through cuttings, which can be rooted in water. To root mock orange in water, take semi-hardwood cuttings of about 4–6 inches (10–15 cm) long and remove the leaves from the lower half. Place the cuttings in a glass of water and wait for roots to form, which can take 1–4 weeks. Be sure to change the water regularly and keep it in a warm, sunny spot.

How to Root Mock Orange In Water?

Materials Needed:

Materials Needed
Healthy mock orange cuttings
(about 4-6 inches long)
Clean, clear glass container
or vase
Room-temperature water
Plastic wrap or a plastic bag
Indirect light
Optional: rooting hormone
(powder or gel)


  1. Select Healthy Cuttings: Choose young, healthy mock orange stems for your cuttings. Look for stems that are not flowering and have a few sets of leaves.
  2. Prepare the Cuttings: Using clean pruning shears, make a clean cut just below a leaf node (where leaves attach to the stem) to create a cutting about 4-6 inches long. Remove any leaves from the lower half of the cutting, leaving a few leaves at the top.
  3. Optional: Apply Rooting Hormone: If you have rooting hormone, dip the mock orange’s cut end into the hormone to encourage root development. This step is optional but can increase the success rate of rooting.
  4. Place in Water: Fill a clear glass container or vase with room-temperature water. Insert the lower end of the mock orange cutting into the water, ensuring that the nodes where the leaves were removed are submerged.
  5. Cover with Plastic: Cover the container or vase with plastic wrap or a plastic bag to create a mini greenhouse effect. This helps maintain high humidity around the cutting and encourages root growth.
  6. Provide Indirect Light: Place the container in a location with bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight, which can overheat the water and potentially harm the cutting.
  7. Monitor and Change Water: Check the water level regularly to ensure it doesn’t become too low. If the water looks cloudy, change it to maintain a clean environment for root development.
  8. Wait for Root Growth: You should see root growth from the nodes submerged in water over a few weeks. Once the roots are several inches long, your mock orange cutting is ready for transplanting.
  9. Transplanting: Once the roots are well-developed, carefully transplant the rooted mock orange cutting into a pot with a well-draining potting mix. Keep the soil consistently moist as the cutting establishes itself.
  10. Acclimate to Outdoor Conditions: If you plan to plant the mock orange shrub outdoors eventually, gradually acclimate the rooted cutting to outdoor conditions by placing it in a sheltered spot for a few hours a day before transplanting it into the garden.

Remember that not all cuttings will successfully root in water, so taking multiple cuttings is a good idea to increase your chances of success. Rooting mock orange cuttings in water can be a rewarding and cost-effective way to propagate this lovely shrub and create new plants for your garden.

You May Also Like: How Long Should You Water Your Lawn With An Oscillating Sprinkler?

Can mock orange be used as a cut flower?

Yes, mock orange (Philadelphus) can be used as a cut flower, bringing a touch of elegance and fragrance to floral arrangements. The charming clusters of delicate, white, or cream-colored flowers that mock orange produces are visually appealing and emit a sweet, citrus-like fragrance that fills the air with a delightful scent. These blooms are often used in bouquets and floral displays on their own and with other flowers and foliage.

When using mock orange as a cut flower, selecting stems that are just beginning to open or have fully opened flowers is essential. These blooms tend to last longer in arrangements. Additionally, cutting the stems early in the morning or late in the day when temperatures are cooler can help preserve the freshness of the flowers. Remove any leaves submerged in water to ensure a longer vase life, as they can deteriorate and lead to bacterial growth.

The captivating appearance and exquisite fragrance of mock orange flowers make them popular for weddings, special occasions, and everyday floral arrangements. Whether used as a focal point or blended with other blooms, mock orange adds a touch of classic beauty and a delightful scent that can transform any space into a haven of elegance and charm.

Where to Plant Mock Orange?

Mock Orange shrubs are a popular choice for gardeners looking to add some unique, fragrant blooms to their landscaping. These hardy shrubs do best in USDA zones 4-8 and need a full-sun location to reach their full potential. Though they can tolerate partial shade, it will reduce the number of flowers that bloom annually. Planting several together makes for an informal hedge or privacy screen. At the same time, a single shrub in a large container near seating areas provides an easy way to enjoy their sweet fragrance.

To get the best growth and flower production out of mock orange shrubs, ensure the soil is moist but well-draining. If you plan on planting more than one, leave plenty of space around each, as they can become very congested if planted too close together.

Pruning annually can also help with blooming production and shape them into your desired style. With regular care and maintenance, these beautiful shrubs will give you a gorgeous display of white or pink flowers each year that you’ll want to show off!

Do cuttings need sunlight to propagate?

When it comes to propagating cuttings, sunlight is an important factor that affects the success of the process. Cuttings do need some sunlight to propagate properly.

When taking cuttings from a plant, they need to be exposed to light to develop roots and grow. Sunlight helps stimulate the growth hormones in the cutting, which encourages the development of roots. If the cuttings are kept in complete darkness, they will not be able to grow properly and may even die off.

If you’re propagating cuttings indoors, keeping them in a bright, sunny spot away from direct sunlight is best. This will ensure that the cuttings get enough light without being exposed to too much heat and light, which can cause them to dry out and die.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I root mock orange in water?

Yes, you can root mock orange in water. Softwood cuttings taken in late spring or early summer can be placed in a container filled with water. Remove any leaves submerged in water and place the container in a spot with indirect sunlight. The cutting should develop roots within a few weeks.

2. How should I prepare the mock orange cutting for rooting in water?

To prepare the mock orange cutting for rooting in water, start by selecting a healthy stem from the parent plant. Make a clean cut just below a leaf node using a sharp knife. Remove any leaves on the lower portion of the stem, as they will be submerged in water. This allows the cutting to focus its energy on root development rather than maintaining leaves.

3. What kind of water should I use for rooting mock orange?

It is best to use distilled water or tap water that has been left out overnight to allow any chlorine to dissipate. Avoid using water with a high mineral content or water treated with water softeners, as it can hinder root development.

4. How often should I change the water when rooting mock orange?

You should change the water every 2-3 days to prevent the development of algae or bacteria that can harm the cutting. Rinse the container and replace the water with fresh, room-temperature water.

5. Can I plant the mock orange cutting directly into the soil after rooting in water?

Yes, once the mock orange cutting has developed a healthy root system in water, it can be planted directly into well-draining soil. Prepare a planting hole twice the size of the root ball and backfill with a mixture of organic matter, such as garden compost or peat moss, and potting soil. Water regularly during the establishment period, ensuring enough moisture without overwatering.


It is possible to root mock orange in water. The cutting should be taken from a healthy stem and prepared by removing any leaves submerged in water. Water should be changed every 2-3 days, and the container should be placed in a spot with indirect sunlight. Once the cutting has developed a healthy root system, it can be transplanted into the soil for further growth. You can successfully propagate mock orange in water with proper care and maintenance.


You may also like

How Often to Water Poinsettia

How Often To Water Poinsettia? Care Guide For Live Christmas Plant

The poinsettia is a popular holiday plant. Its bright red leaves and

​Read More
How to bath a dog without water waterev

How To Bath A Dog Without Water: 13 Steps (With Pictures)

A dog is a member of our family, and they deserve to

​Read More
How often do you water outdoor potted plants

How Often Do You Water Outdoor Potted Plants? – 12 Tips For Healthy Flowers

When determining if your plants need water, the finger-dip test remains the

​Read More
How often to water impatiens

How Often To Water Impatiens? New & Overwatered Impatiens Care & Tips

Impatiens (also known as busy Lizzy) are beautiful houseplants that are easy

​Read More
How often to water fruit trees

How Often To Water Fruit Trees? Young Fruit Trees Need Plenty Of Water

A fruit tree is a perennial plant that grows from a seed.

​Read More
How often to water an Orange Tree

How Often To Water An Orange Tree: Tips, Tricks, And Requirements

Orange trees are some of the oldest living things on earth. They

​Read More
{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Check the articles below

December 9, 2023

The poinsettia is a popular holiday plant. Its

December 6, 2023

A dog is a member of our family,

December 1, 2023

When determining if your plants need water, the