Experienced gardeners know that you must take care when choosing plants to include in your nursery. Not all nurseries offer quality plants, and once you get them home and in the ground, you're unlikely to get a refund. Nursery plants may carry diseases or insect infestations that can spread to the plants already growing in and around your home. When you buy star jasmine flats, you're buying many plants at once. Carefully inspect each plant in the flat before taking it home to avoid problems in the future.
Read the label. This may sound like an obvious step, but if you are unfamiliar with star jasmine, you may end up accidentally purchasing the wrong plant. If the flat is not labeled, ask one of the clerks to identify the variety that you are purchasing.
Examine the star jasmine's leaves. Avoid plants whose leaves are yellowing. Yellowed leaves can indicate a problem as simple as under watering, or one as severe as fungal infection. Look for leaves that are vibrant green, well formed and relatively free of nicks and bruises. Move some of the leaves aside with your hands to get a good look at all of the foliage.
Examine the star jasmine for insect infestations. Get close to the plant and examine its foliage and the soil. Check the underside of many leaves. This is a favorite hiding spot of soft-bodied insects like aphids. If you don't see the insects themselves, check for signs that they have been feeding on the plant. Leaves with holes in them or frayed edges may be under attack. If you find any insects, it may be a good idea to move on to another nursery, as the infestation may be widespread.
Examine the roots of the plants in the flat. Lift up the flat and examine the drainage holes. If roots are growing out of these holes, then the plant is root bound. Use your finger to push up the soil near one corner of the flat. If the soil retains its shape because it is overrun with roots, then the star jasmine plants have become root bound. Root-bound plants are stressed and may not survive transplantation. Look for flats filled with friable, loose soil and jasmine plants whose roots are white, healthy and uncrowded. Avoid star jasmine with roots so shallow that the plant can easily be pulled out of the soil.
Look for star jasmine that has not bloomed yet. Star jasmine with unopened buds will transplant much more readily.
Look for star jasmine that is growing thickly in the flat. Sparse and spindly growth can be a sign that the jasmine is undernourished or even sick.