If you are looking for a plant that will bring colour to your garden in the cold season, look no further! Jasminum nudiflorum a.k.a. Winter jasmine is a perfect choice. But before you add it to your list, it’s best to become more familiar with this superb fellow!
Jasminum nudiflorum, otherwise known as winter jasmine, is an adorable species of flowering plants in the Oleaceae family. This shrub is native to several tropical regions of China, growing mostly in ravines and thickets. It is a very popular winter-blooming ornamental worldwide, making for an eye-catching addition to wall-side borders, containers, banks and slopes as a ground cover, or trellises as a climbing specimen.
Keep reading our guide to find out more interesting facts about Winter jasmine and also how easy it is to grow and care for this shrubby friend!
About Winter Jasmine
- In China, people call this plant Yingchun, which means “the flower that welcomes Spring”. Both Yingchun and the Winter jasmine names refer to its blossom peaks that appear as winter passes.
- Some believe that Winter jasmine has a cultivation history in China of more than 1000 years. The Chinese folks named Winter jasmine, Narcissus, Camellia, and Plum flower the “Four Friends of Snow”.
- Prized for its wonderful cascading branches and foliage and lovely flowers, winter jasmine is a recipient of the prestigious Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.
- Winter jasmine is a hardy and very low-demanding plant that can do well in a wide variety of lighting conditions, temperatures, and soils. It performs nicely with regular moisture but does not appreciate having its feet too wet.
- This beauty will look absolutely fabulous near other species of plants that have similar growing requirements. The most suitable companions include Clematis, English Laurel, Forsythia, Lantana, Rhododendron, and Rose.
- Winter jasmine has no toxic effects on either humans or animals if ingested or touched. You can keep this plant around your curious kids or pets without worrying about their safety.
Winter Jasmine Features: An Overview
- Winter jasmine belongs to the Jasminum genus that contains around 200 species of flowering plants. It shares this genus with other popular jasmines, such as J. angustifolium, J. auriculatum, J. grandiflorum, J. humile, J. laurifolium, J. officinale, or J. sambac.
- Jasminum nudiflorum is a deciduous, creeping, perennial shrub. This plant usually grows up to 4 feet (1.2 m) in both height and width. When it grows on a trellis, this vine can reach sizes of up to 15 feet (4.6 m).
- Winter jasmine tends to become pretty invasive, but not in a bad way. This plant spreads whenever its stems touch the ground. It can also spread easily through seeds.
- Its foliage consists of small, shiny, pinnate, and dark green leaves divided into three oval-oblong leaflets of about 1.2 inches (3 cm) in length each. The leaves appear on long, slender, arching, willow-like, and green stems (branches).
- Winter jasmine can bloom from late winter through early spring. During this period, it exhibits masses of solitary, non-fragrant, six-petaled, trumpet-shaped, bright yellow or white flowers that measure up to one inch (2.5 cm) in diameter.
Growing Winter Jasmine
When it comes to lighting, Winter jasmine can thrive in absolutely any kind of exposure all year round. This buddy is one of the best perennial vines that you can grow in full sunlight without worrying about their overall health. Still, it can also handle pretty well some partial shade, especially during the harsh summer afternoons. But if you want to have full-blooming Winter jasmine in your garden, provide it with at least six hours of bright and direct light daily.
Temperature-wise, Winter jasmine will grow at its best only in the USDA hardiness areas 6 through 11. One of the best things about this shrub is that it can easily tolerate winter temperatures that drop to 5 °F (-15 °C). However, the optimal temperatures for Winter jasmine to show the most spectacular results typically range from 60 to 75 °F (16-24 °C).
Winter jasmine is virtually carefree in terms of pest infestations and fungal diseases. The only major issue that can occur with time is root rot, but you can simply avoid this by planting your Winter jasmine in well-draining soil. Likewise, aphids or mealybugs may bother your shrub once in a while. If you notice any of these intruders on your Winter jasmine, handpick them right away and apply a good insecticidal soap in case of severe infestations.
Planting Winter Jasmine
Winter jasmine is one of the most easy-going garden companions that you can have around, especially when it comes to its growing medium. This shrub can grow in a wide range of soil types, such as sand, clay, loam, or chalk. Moreover, it is not picky at all in terms of soil pH. As long as you manage to plant your Winter jasmine in a substrate that comes with excellent drainage, your winter jasmine will reward you with plenty of beautiful blooms.
Without a doubt, Winter jasmine can make for a great potted plant in both indoor and outdoor settings. If you are thinking about growing this shrub in a container, you should plant it in a well-draining mixture of equal parts of sand and peat. For optimal drainage, look for a pot that also features drainage holes at the bottom.
Winter jasmine can do just fine without extra attention like fertilizers. Yet, your plant will benefit from regular applications of some compost into its growing medium. Make sure you add the compost around the shrub at the time of planting, then repeat this process once every spring.
In general, Winter jasmine will develop naturally as a vine if you skip pruning for good and let it be. Like most species of vines, this plant will require some kind of support to grow healthy and happy in all its splendour. The perfect supports for winter jasmine are usually wooden arbours, fences, low-growing walls, wires, or trellis. As for the pruning, you can trim off any old or unhealthy branch to make room for new ones to emerge.
In case you want to obtain that tidy overall look of a shrub, you must prune your winter jasmine regularly. Keep in mind that you should do this during the spring, but only once its blooming period has ended. However, getting that mounding shrub appearance can result in getting fewer blossoms during the next flowering season.
These plants grow at a fairly slow pace, so pot-grown Winter jasmines can remain in the same container for years. But it will come a time when your shrubs will outgrow their pots. When this happens, you will have to transplant your shrubby friends in other containers that are slightly larger than the current ones. As always, repot your Winter jasmines only after their blooming period, usually in spring.
Watering Winter Jasmine
In general, tropical species of plants are big lovers of moisture and humidity. And Winter jasmine is no different! This flowering plant will look showy only if you spoil it with drinks regularly. However, waterlogging or soggy conditions can result in root rot and your plant may eventually die off from it.
We have good news, though – you can avoid this tragedy by adopting a suitable watering routine. Winter jasmine will usually thrive if you water it two or three times per week. But! The frequency of watering will vary depending on the climate from your region and also the season.
Because of this, we warmly recommend you check the soil in-between waterings. When the first half of it has dried out completely, you can give your Winter jasmine a generous drink.
Propagating Winter Jasmine
The most efficient propagating materials of Winter jasmine are semi-hardwood cuttings and seeds. Using both of these methods will require little to no effort on your part, so you do not have to worry about the results if you are a beginner in the gardening world. After all, you should know that even the most experienced growers can fail to propagate many types of plants. Now get to work and try your luck!
If you want to propagate your Winter jasmine through cuttings, you must wait for the last danger of frost to pass, typically in spring. Look for young, semi-hardwood branches and cut about 4 to 6 inches (10-15 cm) off them with clean and sharp gardening shears. Make sure you remove any extra leaves from the lower half of each cutting. After this step, you can plant the cuttings directly in the ground or in pots filled with fresh well-draining soil. For nice growth, provide the Winter jasmine cuttings with water whenever the soil feels dry to the touch.
The ideal time to start Winter jasmine seeds is somewhere around several months before the actual time of planting outdoors. First things first, you need to collect the seeds from the flowers during or right after the blooming period. Next, soak the seeds for one day or so before placing them in moist potting soil.
Once you sow the seeds, cover the pot with a plastic bag to maintain the ideal levels of moisture and humidity around them. Check the soil regularly and water the seeds when the top half of the soil has dried out. When you start to notice two pairs of leaves on the seedlings, you can transplant the tiny Winter jasmines in their permanent location outdoors.
Gorgeous, easy-going, and long-lasting – an irresistible mix that every respectable gardener must have in its collection. In fact, what could you possibly want more from a plant companion? If you are already the blessed owner of Winter jasmine, share your personal experience in the comments!