Water-saving Native Plant of The Week, by Bob Dailey: Carolina Jessamine

By: Woodlands Water | Published 09/14/2020


THE WOODLANDS, TX -- Water-saving Native Plant of The Week, by Bob Dailey: Carolina Jessamine (Gelsemium sempervirens). This plant is native from Virginia to Florida and west to Arkansas and east. It reaches as far south as Guatemala.Carolina Jessamine is a twining, perennial, evergreen vine, 10-20 ft. long, that will climb trees, scramble over fences and structures, or develop a mound of tangled stems if left to its own devices. Lustrous, dark-green foliage develops a slight yellow or purple cast in winter. Auxiliary clusters of very fragrant, yellow, trumpetshaped flowers. The fruit is a 1 1/2 in. long capsule. This high-climbing vine is very common in parts of the South, frequently found in abandoned fields and climbing high into the canopies of pine forests. It is quite adaptable and tenacious, with no serious disease or insect problems. These qualities, along with its glossy, evergreen leaves and waxy, trumpet-shaped flowers, have made it a mainstay of the suburban landscape in the Southeast. Grows is sun to part shade, any well drained humus rich soil from sand to clay. Drought tolerant once established. It is one of the first native flowers to bloom in the spring.

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