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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Pink Jasmine

Pink Jasmine (Jasminum polyanthum), native to western & southern China, is a fast-climbing evergreen vine that can very easily cover twenty feet of fence, wall, or pergola. It can also be kept severely pruned to function as a small trellised shrub of around six feet height, or it can be grown as a groundcover or in containers.

The flowers have splendid scent. Though called "Pink" it is only the buds that are bright pink. When opened the star-shaped flowers are pure white.

It is alternatively called Pink Winter Jasmine (distinct from yellow-flowering J. nudilflorum also called Winter Jasmine), because Pink Jasmine begins blooming by February, sometimes by January. But it also blooms the entirety of spring & much of the summer. In more southern & warmer zo
nes , it stops blooming much earlier in the year, as it dislikes very hot summers. If grown indoors or in heated greenhouses, it may have to be kept in a moveable container so that it can be taken outside to experience a moderate chill in late autumn or early winter, for if it does not detect the seasons, it will not set buds.

It likes rich, moist, well draining soil, & as with the majority of vines that bloom through multiple seasons, it benefits from liquid fertilizer fed to it once a month spring until the start of autumn; but it will also do quite nicely if fed only once, in late winter or early spring, with a slow-release granular fertilizer.

When it is through blooming, it will require a good solid sheering in order to again bloom well the following year. One mustn't wait until long after it is through blooming to prune it, or the following winter's end buds will already be setting.


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