Sunday, March 12, 2017

Jasminum officinale, 'Poets Jasmine'


       Jasminum officinale, 'Poet's Jasmine'
This has always been my favourite species of Jasmine and it took me awhile to locate a plant of it to start propagating it again as it has almost disappeared from the nursery trade. A gardening friend from the Sydney suburb of Paddington had it growing along a wall mixed in with Jasminum nitidum and old roses. She also showed me where a giant plant of it was cascading over a local lane way wall so perhaps it is an inner urban plant of yesteryear.
Overall it is an untidy lax shrub and not strictly a climber as it rambles and scrambles its way over things flowering almost non-stop in a mild frost free climate. Training it as a single trunked specimen against a sturdy metal post is often the way I have seen it growing in the gardens of Italian-Australians where it holds special significance. In Italy the flowers were entwined with orange blossom to form a bridal headdress assuring the bride of constancy and love; a tradition derived from the country expression of 'she who is worthy of being decorated in jasmine is rich enough for any husband'.
 I will have plants ready for sale later in the year.

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