Night Blooming Jasmine
Discover the Enchanting Scents of Night Blooming Jasmine
Night blooming jasmine (cestrum nocturnum) is a type of plant deriving from the cestrum family and, as the name suggests, blooms over night. This variety of jasmine is usually found in tropical and subtropical countries.
Night blooming jasmine has thin twigs that occasionally wind themselves around trees, poles and walls, however not to the extent of a normal jasmine plant. The night blooming jasmine can grow up to 15 feet tall and is thickly covered by slightly hairy leaves. What make the plant so popular are the bell-shaped flowers that bloom at night and have a very strong scent. This very unique fragrance is not heavy but is mostly as enjoyable as an aroma therapy in a spa. It is difficult to describe the scent without having smelled it, but many people compare it to peaches or even bubble gum.
Night blooming jasmine is actually very pretty to look at due to the fact that it remains green all year round. However, it is used to hot climates and cannot survive frosty winters. If you live in a rather cold or Nordic climate zone but still want to enjoy a nightly aroma therapy, you may be able to grow the plant in a pot. It is notable that night blooming jasmine does not need a lot of sunlight, so as long as the temperatures are mild you may be able to transplant it to your garden at a later stage when the roots are strong. While it is possible to grow it in the shade, it should not be entirely covered from sunlight as every plant needs light to grow. Water is very essential as well as damp soil that has a cool temperature all year round.
The temperature during the winter should not be under 50°F as this is the absolute minimum to keep the roots going. Night blooming jasmine can only survive temperatures below that for few days and will die below 32°F. During the winter you will find that the plant is losing a lot of leaves which is a normal process. They will return between April and May when it is time to blossom and grow again. Generally spoken, night blooming jasmine has a rapid growth and transplantation from pot to garden is not dangerous at all. The roots grow just as fast as the plant itself; if you cannot plant the jasmine in the garden due to climate or space reasons, you have to transplant it into bigger pots every year. If you fail to do so, the roots may suffocate and the plant will unfortunately die.
The oil that is gained from night blooming jasmine is often used as a relaxing bath aroma. You can usually purchase the essence in any larger drug store and adding it to a hot bath promises a soothing effect on the nervous system. Since the scent is very intense and unique you may want to open the bottle and smell the essence first before you buy it. While the scent is used for fragrances and perfume in beauty products, the plant can also become dangerous.
After the flowering process has been completed, the plant grows poisonous berries that should not be eaten under any circumstance. The ingestion of these fruits can have fatal consequences, especially in children. As for the scent, sensitive people may experience problems in the respiratory tracts through continuous exposure to the night blooming jasmine. While there is no scientific proof of toxins or similar things in the scent, people with asthma or similar diseases find the scent rather irritating in the nose and throat.
Due to the poisonous berries and potentially irritating scent, the night blooming jasmine has been named a weed by many countries. While some people are simply enchanted by the smell and feel a relaxing effect, others consider the plant toxic and its spreading is considered rather worrying.