Winter Jasmine – Jasminium nudiflorun

Winter Jasmine flowers in the depths of winter at a time when your patio or balcony is probably looking colourless and dreary. The attractive yellow flowers appear before the leaves and the colourful display can continue for many weeks, right into spring.

Winter Jasmine is hardy and will flourish in most locations, even against a cold north wall, although it will produce larger, more prolific flowers when grown in full sun. Keep it well watered in spring and summer. Strong winds can damage the flowers in exposed locations. It is a rambling shrub which needs some support to help it stay upright, and it loses its leaves every year. In very cold weather, protect the roots from frost by wrapping layers of sacking or bubble polythene round the container.

The dark green rambling stems of Winter Jasmine are square in section and grow up to 3m (10ft) long. They should be trained against a wall or around a pyramid of stout canes to prevent them from looking untidy.

The yellow flowers appear on bare stems during late winter, growing singly or in small clusters. Each flower is up to 25mm (1 in) across. The three oval leaflets that follow are smooth and glossy.Winter Jasmine - Jasminium nudiflorun

Display ideas

Winter Jasmine looks best when it is trained to grow against a wall. Secure the lower section of the stems to the wall with wires or tie them into a trellis. Allow the top part of the stems to fall forward, creating a ‘fountain’ of first flowers and then foliage. Alternatively, tie the stems to a short pyramid of sturdy canes inserted into the container. Use the canes to form a foundation for the ‘fountain’.

Looking after your plant

Winter Jasmine prefers a sunny position, although it will grow happily in all situations, even against a cold north wall. This plant is frost-hardy, but will shed its leaves in winter. Try to find a position which is sheltered from the wind, as this can damage the plant.

When planting out, choose a large, deep container to allow plenty of room for the roots. First, spread a 10cm (4in) deep drainage layer of pot shards or washed, coarse shingle across the base before adding the compost. This helps prevent the compost from freezing during severe winters. Use a soil-based compost and feed regularly during the growing season with a general liquid fertilizer.

Prune after flowering

to remove straggling stems. In late spring, cut back flowering shoots to within 8cm (5in) of the base and tie in new spring growth, which will flower the following winter.

Pests And Diseases

White, powdery deposits on the leaves are signs of mildew. Treatment: Spray with a suitable fungicide, repeating at regular intervals. Badly affected plants may need severe cutting back.

Aphids cluster on the leaf buds and on the tips of new shoots during late spring after flowering.

Treatment: Wash the aphids off by spraying the plant with soapy water. Use an insecticide for severe attacks and repeat treatment if necessary.

Prevention: Insert sticks of insecticide into the compost round the plant roots. They will keep the plant free from aphids and other pests for several weeks.

PLANT CARE

Winter Jasmine is easy to grow. Regular watering and feeding during the growing period are essential. Protect from cold winds to ensure a good display of flowers. Prune after flowering to encourage new growth.

  • Potting: Top dress plants after flowering by removing and replacing the top 5cm (2in) of compost with fresh soil-based compost.
  • Water generously in warm weather, keeping the compost evenly moist. Remember that plants in terracotta pots will dry out quickly in the sun. Water sparingly in winter, giving just enough water to moisten the compost.
  • Feeding: Feed every fourteen days during the growing period with a liquid fertilizer.

BEST GROWTH ENVIRONMENT

  • Light: Winter Jasmine prefers a sunny position against a south-facing wall, but will equally suit any other direction providing there is protection from wind.
  • Temperature: Winter Jasmine is frost-hardy. Protect the roots from exceptionally heavy frosts by wrapping thick layers of sacking or bubble polythene round the container.

Buying Tips

  • Winter Jasmine is a popular plant and is widely available at garden centres and nurseries during early spring and summer.
  • Choose a plant with strong, healthy stems. When buying a container-grown plant in flower, select one which has plenty of unopened buds.
  • Winter Jasmine will thrive for many years.

Even if you have just a tiny patio or balcony, find a place for a tub of Winter Jasmine. Pretty yellow flowers are produced in late winter, at a time when most plants are dormant.

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