Q: Will you identify this flower I found growing in my mother’s yard in South Florida?

A: I believe you have Downy or star jasmine, Jasminum multiflorum, which is best suited for the warmer temperatures of Central and South Florida which are in cold hardiness zones 8b-11. It is possible it will survive cool winters along the coast in Northeast Florida, but it is a little risky. Some folks have had success with growing it a little farther inland but if we have long, sustained cold temperatures, it may not survive. It is not highly salt tolerant so it would not be advisable to plant it along the beach areas. The name “downy” comes from the small hair-like projections on the surface of the leaves making the shrub appear to have a blue-gray hue. Many of the jasmine family members are more vine-like but Downy jasmine grows into a small shrub – up to 12 feet tall. It grows quickly, filling in an empty space easily so be sure you allow enough room. Jasmine plants are usually prized for their fragrant flowers but the Downy jasmine flower does not have the strong, familiar aroma. Downy jasmine is not fussy about soil pH or any specific sun exposure which makes it a nice addition to any landscape hedge as long as enough room is provided for mature height and spread. It has few pest issues but like most woody ornamental plants, it does not like over-head irrigation.

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Posted: June 16, 2017


Category: Home Landscapes
Tags: Jasminum Multiflorum, Star Jasmine


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