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I enquired about this last year but I didn't retain the reply (sorry!)
I have looked up in my gardening books about pruning Philadelphus but it says after flowering. My plant was new in Spring last year and has not flowered yet. It is in a raised bed and has grown about 8 leggy branches (some over 6') and they are leaning over somewhat. As my garden is quite tiny it's height is beginning to overpower the border. Can I reduce it's height?
I will try to post a pic to give better idea. Hope it works!
If you cut it now you won't get flowers next year either. Leave until July next year, or immediately after flowering.
You might need to plant the dwarf version instead. I had a tall one and eventually realised it was too big, so I dug it out.
As it gets more mature even if you prune it after flowering, it will be over 6 feet tall.
I would prune it now. Forget the flowers...it sounds like it won't produce many anyway. Look for side shoots on those 8 stems ...ideally as low as possible and look for a pair......and cut to those. I would then feed. (water well of its dry there) and mulch generously
No flowers next year.....possibly not year after.....but then it will flower on lots of stems.
Thereafter prune removing flowered shoots. Best tackled now and think of all those scented flowers in 2015
I disagree that you can't keep this plant compact. Even the dwarf varieties will get tall if not pruned correctly. I keep mine floriferous and compact