I did some research on the Philadelphus "Buckley's Quill" and learned:
"Buckley's Quill' - A semi-dwarf plant (Vis. 1) with a
height of 6 feet and a spread of 4 feet. The common
name refers to the 1 inch flowers (Vis. 2) with up to
30 quill-like petals."
Well, my shrub is easily 15-20 feet tall and 15-20 feet wide.
Further, based on what I've found so far, the Philadelphus is only found in the Western part of the United States and southwest Canada. Yet, I'm in the southeast US. The plant was discovered by Lewis (of Lewis and Clark) on their expedition out west.
Dave, that is the same info I found in my AHS Encyclopedia but it does look exactly like it. I figured you were just really lucky to have such a strong growing version of it. Is that the same source you got your info? If so then you can compare the picture to yours.
Philadelphus and Deutzia were my first two choices, too. But I don't know...something keeps telling me this may be in the Prunus family? Maybe a Flowering Almond? They do have some with double white flowers, but I can't find any good pictures to compare.
Hi Dave I'm glad you got that one sorted however the reason I thought it was philadelphus is because Deutzia scabra is only supposed to grow 10ft tall and 6ft spread according to my RHS book. Oh well I guess they are wrong LOL
Dave you might want to have your county extension agent take a look at it. Plants that achieve unusual size are sometimes placed on a state or national registry. I recently saw an article about a Dogwood that had been given that type of honor - it was pretty cool.
Most reference books max this shrub out at 10ft which in itself is pretty darn big. To put it in better perspective, the ceiling in your average home is only 8ft and this shrub typically can get even bigger than that and still fall within its normal height range! A 15-20ft shrub would be at, or over the PEAK of the roof on your average 1 story home, in fact, that qualifies as a small tree so if its really that big, then you have a real winner. Why don't you take a pic of the entire shrub, I for one would love to see it in all its glory!
There are 5 pictures on that page, and the latter 3 are the ones that I took today to show the height. I put Trish in the picture so you'd have a point of reference as to the height. The little one somehow snuck into the pictures also. :)
Dave - this is phenominal!! Trish and the baby look pretty charming also :-). I find it so hard to believe this is a deutzia growing to such enormous proportions but the blooms would clearly indicate that it is. It has been said that some things in America are larger than life and now I'm inclined to think that there might be some truth in that. I am quite fascinated by your shrub (tree ?) and will research some more. All I can say is, lucky you and when are you going to take cuttings...lol!