Jasminum officinale or J. odoratissimum
Flowers from June to Sept.
Common Names / Habitat /Magickal Uses / Edible Uses / Medicinal Uses / Cultivation / Propagation / Scent / Cultivars

Common Names:Common White Jasmine, Jessamine, Poet's Jasmine, So Hsing, Yasamin, Yasemin, Yeh Hsi Mi, Yeh Hsi Ming

Habitat: Shrubberies and forests, usually on humus-rich soils, 1200 - 3000 metres in the Himalayas

Magickal Uses: Love, Money, Prophetic Dreams

Edible Uses: Condiment; Flowers; Tea. Flowers - fragrant. Eaten or used to flavour or scent tea. The dried flowers are a tea substitute. An essential oil from the flowers is used as a condiment in various foods, especially Maraschino cherries but also baked goods, ice cream, sweets, chewing gum etc. It imparts a bitter-sweet floral tone.

Medicinal Uses: Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Aphrodisiac; Aromatherapy; Galactogogue; Parasiticide; Tonic. The leaf juice is applied to corns. The leaves contain salicylic acid (found also in the bark of Salix species and used as an analgesic, febrifuge etc). The root is used in the treatment of ringworm. The flowers are aphrodisiac, antiseptic, antispasmodic, galactogogue and tonic. They are mainly used in aromatherapy. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy. Its keyword is 'Aphrodisiac'. It is used in the treatment of depression, nervous tension, impotence, frigity, menstrual disorders and weak digestion.

Cultivation: Succeeds in a good well-drained loam, preferring a sunny position. Very shade tolerant, it succeeds on a north facing wall. Plants are hardy to about -15c. Another report says that they are hardy to about -10c, and that the stem tips are often killed back in the winter though the plant soon recovers. Climbs by means of twining. It is self-supporting and fast-growing . Any pruning is best carried out in late winter and early spring. A very ornamental plant, there are some named varieties. The flowers are very fragrant and the plant is sometimes cultivated for the essential oil in its flowers, the sub-species J. officinale grandiflorum is used. Flowers are produced on the current year's growth and also on older wood.

Propagation: Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Very easy. Cuttings of mature wood in November. Layering.

Scent: Flowers: Fresh. The flowers are very fragrant with a delicious aroma. An essential oil from the flowers is used in perfumery. The flowers are picked soon after opening each morning and used fresh for oil extraction.

Cultivars: There are some named forms for this species, but these have been developed for their ornamental value and not for their other uses. Unless you particularly require the special characteristics of any of these cultivars, we would generally recommend that you grow the natural species for its useful properties.

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