Trachelospermum jasminoides is a lovely climbing plant for a sheltered spot or a south facing wall. It produces masses of deliciously scented white flowers, fading to cream, from June to early September.
The winter foliage takes on excellent bronze tinges and the new foliage in spring is light green, making the plant attractive all year round. It needs support and shelter from cold, drying winds. It is frost hardy but will need some protection in severe winters and will appreciate a mulch in spring and autumn. It is slow growing to start but will gather momentum as it matures.
Great for your garden:
Trachelospermum jasminoides is one of the most beautiful of evergreen climbing plants. It has lovely glossy dark green foliage and produces masses of heavily scented white flowers from June until early September.
It does need some shelter and will do best away from drying winds, preferably against a warm wall. It needs a well drained moisture retentive soil but is not fussy about pH and it will require support. It is very good grown as a pillar or over an arch as long as the site is not too exposed.
It is ideal grown in a warm site close to a sitting area where the wonderful scent can be best appreciated.
Look out for:
Trachelospermum jasminoides is frost hardy but may need protection in severe winters. It does not do well in exposed sites with drying winds or with impoverished soils and so will benefit from a monthly feed during the growing season and should be kept well watered throughout the summer.
It may occasionally suffer with scale insects which can be removed with the use of horticultural oils or a dilute solution of washing up liquid.
Trachelospermum jasminoides was introduced by the Scottish botanist Robert Fortune from Southern China where he travelled extensively. He was responsible for introducing tea plants into India from China in the 1800's.
One of the places it can be found in the wild is Uzbekistan where it is known as 'Trader's Compass' when the leaves are believed to point traders of good character in the right direction. It is, however, more seriously used by the high-end perfume industry for whom the oil has great value and in China and Vietnam where it is used in the manufacture of incense.