Choisya ternata (Mexican Orange Blossom)
If you are after a medium-sized, rounded, fragrant flowering evergreen shrub, Choisya ternata, is a great choice. The clusters of abundant citrus-scented, starry white flowers, are surrounded by whorls of slender, aromatic glossy green leaves.
Native to Mexico and south west America, Mexican orange blossom, as it is often referred to, loves the sun, and will form an elegant, neat and rounded bush. Even better, Choisya ternata is fully hardy, and will reach to 2.5m wide and 2.5m tall in maturity.
The flowers are arranged in attractive clusters, have a wonderful almond scent, and open to pure-white in mid spring. Choisya ternata will flower throughout late spring and early summer, and if the weather is hot, it will often flower again in autumn, for a second flush of gorgeous blooms.
The distinctive slender bright green, trifoliolate leaves of Choisya ternata are highly aromatic when crushed, and are an attractive foliage addition to any garden, year round.
Choisya is pollinated by bees, and is therefore a superb choice if you are looking to add a wildlife friendly plant to your garden.
Choisya ternata prefers full-sun, fertile, well-drained soil and ideally a sheltered position. It will do ok in partial shade, but may not flower as profusely. In northern gardens it is worth giving it extra protection and planting it against a south or west-facing wall. It is also tolerant of dry shade in cities, makes a good choice for an urban sun-filled garden.
Prune Choisya ternata immediately after flowering in spring, to encourage a second flush of flowers the same season.
- Ultimate height 2.5m
- Ultimate spread 2.5m
- Time to ultimate height 10 – 20 years
- Full sun to dappled shade
- Well drained soil, sheltered position any pH
RHS hardiness H4: hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
- Cottage garden and informal
- Herbaceous flower borders and beds
- City and courtyard gardens