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A Versatile Plant: How To Care For & Grow Star Jasmine

Star Jasmine, or Trachelospermum jasminoides, has glossy foliage & sweetly scented flowers. It's versatile & can be trained in many ways. Here's how to care for & grow Star Jasmine.

How To Care For & Grow Star Jasmine

Star Jasmine is a versatile plant indeed. It can be trained to grow on a trellis, over an arbor, as an espalier against a wall or fence, as a border plant or hedge, to spill over a wall and it’s also suited to containers.  The sweetly scented star-like flowers along with the gorgeous glossy foliage are its big draw. This is all about how to care for and grow Star Jasmine.

How To Care For & Grow Star Jasmine

I’m standing under a Star Jasmine arch in the kitchen garden at the Westward Look Resort here in Tucson.

This twining, vining plant isn’t a true jasmine, like Pink Jasmine which is, although the flowers would make you think otherwise. The botanic name is Tracelospermum jasminoides and it’s in the same family with a few plants you might be familiar with: oleander, plumeria, adenium and vinca. By the way, Confederate Jasmine is another common name for Star Jasmine.

In the back corner of my garden sharing Star Jasmine growing tips:

 

How to care for & grow Star Jasmine:

Size

Star Jasmine can reach 25-30′ tall. It needs support to reach that height otherwise it just flops back on itself.  It’s a twining vine so you’ll need to train & attach it at the start. It’ll do its thing after that & needs just a little guiding as it grows. Not hard at all to do.  As a ground cover, it can easily be kept at 2′.

How To Care For & Grow Star Jasmine

This Star Jasmine climbs to 25′ with the help of wires in a corner of this building. 

Hardiness

It’s hardy to zone 8 & can take temperatures down to 10-15 degrees F. This plant adapts well to both heat & cold.

When to Plant

Star Jasmine is best planted in spring or fall (with enough time to settle in before the below freezing temps. hit). The plants have an easier time settling in while the days are warm & the evenings are cool. You can plant in the summer but will have to water more as it’s establishing.

Exposure

Star Jasmine takes full sun on the coast, somewhere like San Diego or San Francisco. Here in Tucson, or other places with hot summers, it needs to be protected from full sun. Mine gets 1 hour of direct sun in the morning & a little bit late in the afternoon but it’s bright all day. The more sun it gets, the more water it needs to keep it looking tip top.

Water

Regular watering is best. Here in the desert I water my Star Jasmine (which is on drip) twice a week in the hotter months. For you, regular watering might mean every 10-14 days.  It’s not a drought tolerant plant but it’s not water greedy either. More sun, more heat = more water.

Soil

This plant is fairly versatile when it comes to soil but prefers it on the loamy side with good drainage. If planting in a container, use a good quality organic potting soil. 

Fertilization

I’ve maintained & planted many Star Jasmines & never fertilized them. They’ve always been very happy with a good dose of organic compost. I put a 4″ layer over the planting surface of mine in winter which not only nourishes it, but holds some moisture too. If you prefer, this all purpose balanced fertilizer would be just fine to apply right after the plant is through flowering.

Star Jasmine kept low as a ground cover.

Pests

The 2 pests that I’ve seen infest Star Jasmine are mealy bugs & scale.

Pruning

Star Jasmine is best pruned right after flowering. It does ooze out a milky sap when cut but it never bothered me. It can be prune heavily, like as a border plant, or lightly, like when grown as a tall vine. I’ll prune mine after it’s through flowering & then do a light pruning in November if needed. I find this plant to be very manageable & not at all hard to prune.

Flowers

Oh yes it does! A profusion of starry white flowers cover the plant in spring or early summer, depending on your zone. The flowers are sweetly scented (not as strong as Pink Jasmine) & last for a couple of months.

How To Care For & Grow Star Jasmine

Flowers in starry clusters against a blue desert sky.

Things to love about Star Jasmine

It’s versatility.

Easy to maintain. It’s manageable & takes pruning very well.

The foliage is a beautiful dark glossy green with the contrast of spring green new foliage.

You can find it in garden centers as well as big box stores. In case you don’t have any close, here’s a Star Jasmine you can order online.

This plant come in a variegated form too if that’s your thing.

And of course, the sweetly scented flowers.

I love this plant and am so glad that my new home has a well established one. Do you have a favorite? Star Jasmine Or Pink Jasmine? Inquiring horticultural minds want to know!

Happy gardening & thanks for stopping by,

 

 

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20 comments:

  1. will jasmine grow in a pot… or does it have to be planted in the ground

  2. Hi – Yes, Star Jasmine makes a fine container plant. Just know that as it grows you’ll need to transplant it into a larger pot. Nell

  3. Great video! I love star jasmine and am planting it on a front yard slope this weekend. I am interested in seeing your pruning video if you decide to post one. Thanks!

  4. Thank you! I’ll be pruning my Star Jasmine soon because it has already bloomed. I’ll definitely post the video. Nell

  5. I think you are a great teacher thank you. I have one purchased for a 3 season sun room in NewEngland. ((New Hampshire).
    I always wanted a green space indoor as it is cold and dark in New England winters. After experimenting with geraniums, brought in for overwintering, which thrived and bloomed all winter, I thought why not. I lived in Ireland for 2 years and these sun rooms had loads of vines etc.
    The room stays at zone 7 or 8 so even if I am away dormancy is no problem nor need to water. Plants make me so happy.
    I love green.

  6. Hi Cathleen – Thank you. I love plants & also love sharing what I know. As I say, it’s definitely worth a try. I’ll be in New Hampshire this August visiting family. And yes, I do remember those cold, dark New England winters & that’s when houseplants really add cheer. All the best, Nell

  7. Hi Nell-
    Id like to re-direct my jasmine from rambling down a 4′ slope to reverse up into a lovely (dead) maple just behind it.
    Its blooming now and I’ve tried to detangle the base branches and prune underneath a bit but, honestly, I’ve no idea what I’m doing. I’m just making maters worse and uglier. I just want to cry when I walk past my little patch of garden.
    would you email me?
    Please advise.

  8. Hi Lisa – I just pruned my Star Jasmine & right now it doesn’t look fabulous. It needs to grow out & fill in, which it will do over time. Star Jasmine is a twining vine, which can grow up to 20′ tall, but it does need training & attaching to get going. Tip pruning will help it to fill in. And, be patient! Nell

  9. Cynthia Kritikos

    Thank you for doing this video!Could you please tell us what side of the house yours is growing the desert?

  10. Hi Cynthia – You’re welcome! It’s growing against an east facing wall. We had a record heat wave in late June & this plant, along with many others, got sunburned. Temps are back to normal (around 99 – 102) & it’s recovering now. Lots of new growth already showing. Nell

  11. We moved from the central coast (cool) of Oregon to the central coast of Calif. in Feb. We brought our potted jasmine with us. We gave it a nice home, compost sandy soil and Miracle Grow in a large hole. It faces west, against a stucco wall. My husband made an awesome trellis for itand I have “tied” it up to try and train it. Immediately it began to gorw, but seems troubled now. All of this and is refuses to bloom (except a few flowers) and a lot of it’s leaves are turning red, some brown and falling off. The temperatures range in the 60’s and 70′ for the most part. The topsoil seems to dry out in the sun-

    Question-what can we do to make this plant happy again>

  12. Hi Carolyn – I lived on the coast of CA for many years; Star Jasmine does great in that climate. The reddish-brown leaves are the older ones which fall off to allow the new ones to grow in. Or, it could be environmental stress, ie: cold, too much water, etc. Star Jasmine blooms heaviest in late spring there so wait until next year. By the way, it blooms on new growth so you want to encourage that with pruning right after it blooms. Nell

  13. hello

    ive just bought oe of these climbers but am a bit unsure how to actually plant it. i want it to go against a fence i have but am unsure if i can just plant it upright into the ground near the fence and let it grow or if i lean it towards the fence. also should i leave the supports in that it came with and leave it to grow a bit more untill established before taking them out or do i take them ot stright away and train it along wire that i have put up?

  14. Hi Isabel – I always lean any vine slightly towards the fence, wall or support it’s going on. If the plant has trails long enough to attach to the wire supports, then take the stakes out. If not, wait a little longer until you can. Nell

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  16. Hello, I am getting ready to prune my Jasmine. I am wondering if already has grown vines that I need to put on a trellis. this is the first pruning I have done. The vines are sparcely covered with leaves. Should I prune the vines? Thanks for reading my questions.

    Flynn

  17. Hi Flynn – I’m about to give my Star Jasmine a light fall pruning too. You want to give it the heaviest pruning after flowering. Give it a tip pruning now. Nell

  18. I am so glad that you posted this video. It hit all the points for someone like me. I have admired this plant for years, but didn’t have the knowledge to take care of it. Thank you so, so much for making this video. The most complete and invaluable information for newbies.

  19. Artesia – You’re very welcome! I try to explain things as clearly & simply as possible so I’m glad you found it useful. I’m doing a post & video soon on the fall pruning (it’ll be a light one) because it needs a bit of shaping after it’s big pruning late this spring. Stay tuned for that. Nell

  20. We are just in early summer here in AUS and my first round of flowers are dying off. Should I remove the browning flowers to encourage a new bloom?

  21. Yes Anthony. The best time to prune a Star Jasmine is after it does it’s big flowering in late spring/early summer. I gave mine anothr pruning in early fall; a much lighter one. Nell

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