What is jasmine flower look like? Information about jasmine flower care, types, growing conditions and facts.
Jasmine; is the common name for plants in the genus Jasminum, of the olive family (Oleaceae). The 200 to 300 species are native to tropical and subtropical areas, except in North America. The greatest variety occur in southeastern Asia and the East Indies.
Two important forms are Jasminum officinale, the “jessamine” celebrated in poetry, from the Middle East; and J. grandiflorum, the Spanish jasmine, often considered a variety of J. officinale. Jessamine has very slender, spreading branches, reaching up to 40 feet (12 meters) in length; glossy foliage; and fragrant white flowers.
Spanish jasmine is shorter and bushier, and its fragrant white flowers are slightly tinged with pink. It has become naturalized in Florida. The Spanish jasmine is the primary source of oil of jasmine, an important perfume oil, now also made synthetically. The plant is cultivated for the oil in the Mediterranean region, especially southern France, and as much as a thousand tons (900 metric tons) of flowers may be harvested in a single season.
Several other shrubs are also called jasmine, though they belong to entirely different families. Cape jasmine (Gardenia jasminoides), of the madder family (Rubiaceae), native to China, has large, waxy, very fragrant white flowers. Carolina jasmine (Gelsemium sempervirens), of the logania family (Loganiaceae), is a climbing vine native to the United States. It has evergreen foliage and bright yellow, very fragrant flowers. The red jasmine (Plumeria rubra), from the West Indies, and the white-flowered Chilean jasmine (Mandevilla suavolens) both belong to the dogbane family (Apocynaceae). The red jasmine is the source of frangipani perfume.