Chinese Star Jasmine
Wednesday, 28 November 2018
Photo – The Chinese Star Jasmine in full flower in Wodonga TAFE’s carpark.
One of the most fragrant climbers in the garden is the Chinese Star Jasmine. This plant is also known as Jessamine and Confederate Jasmine and its botanical name is Trachelospermum jasminoides. This plant isn’t a true Jasmine, yet if we have a look at the species name - ‘jasmin’ refers to the plant Jasminum and ‘oides’ means ‘I look like’. So jasminoides means ‘I look like a Jasmine’.
This plant is an evergreen climber – a robust and vigorous plant which produces fragrant white flowers in huge quantities during spring and into summer. This plant will twine around anything it can use for support. I have one at home growing on a verandah post while one at work is growing on a wire fence. This is a very popular plant and many gardens will have specimens so you often get the heavenly fragrance of this plant wafting through the air.
This plant has many uses, you can grow it as a climber, or shape into a hedge like we have in the Horticultural Department, it can be used as a groundcover or you can let it sprawl over an embankment.
This is a fairly hardy plant that does well in most of Australia, it can adapt very well to both hot and cold climates. This plant will grow in most aspects. My plant at home gets shade in the afternoon and still flowers brilliantly. The hedge at the Horticulture Department is in full sun and it flowers extremely well. It isn’t too fussy about soil either. It will grow in most soils, even poor ones but give it a rich, well-drained soil and off it goes!
This goes for most plants – when newly planted you will need to water regularly until it’s established, then you can back off with the watering because this plant is quite drought tolerant.
It will grow/spread for metres. Different references say between 4 to 6 but I think it can grow even further than that. This is a fast growing plant and you need to trim back any branches that are twining in directions where you don’t want it. Always wait until flowering is finished to prune, why cut off all those lovely flowers?
This is a top notch plant in the right location, one of the most fragrant and one of the easiest to grow.
Diary - 2019 Free TAFE for Priority Courses will reduce the barriers for students wanting to train in courses that lead to priority occupations – those in demand from employers in the Victorian economy. This is a Victorian Government initiative. Selected Agriculture and Horticulture courses are included - to find out more about Free TAFE for Priority Courses, including eligibility and course details Phone 1300 MY TAFE (1300 698 233) | Email firstname.lastname@example.org
By Deb Delahunty, Horticulture Teacher, Wodonga TAFE.