One of the most beloved New Jersey winter native plants is the Winter Jasmine (Jasminum Nudiflorum), a slender, deciduous, perennial that often blooms in January. While it doesn’t have the beautiful scent of typical Jasmines, its abundant, cheery butter-yellow blooms, appearing before its glossy, dark green leaves, do warm the hearts of many a winter-weary gardener. It is a member of the olive family and is the most winter-hardy of Jasmine species.
Winter Jasmine can reach a height of 4 feet and width of 7 feet, but with support can reach a height of 15 feet. The versatile structure of this plant lends itself to a variety of uses in the garden, from shrub, to vine to ground cover depending on your treatment of it. While it isn’t a true climbing plant, Winter Jasmine does easily trail over structures as well as hold itself up with a little help from other plants. In doing so, this makes Winter Jasmine a great choice for covering unattractive walls or fences, or to train for use on a trellis. Trimmed regularly, it can function as a shrub or even as a ground cover. Beautiful when planted in groups, consider Winter Jasmine for covering steep slopes or over walls as well.
Full sun, a well-drained soil and regular moisture, especially in the summer, are ideal growing conditions for Winter Jasmine, and while it can handle even less than ideal quality soils, the addition of some compost will prove to be beneficial as will mulch for water retention and weed prevention. This hardy plant is easy to care for, pet-friendly and attracts pollinators such as butterflies.
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