Night-blooming jasmine (Cestrum nocturnum), or night-blooming jessamine, perfumes the summer garden with its fragrance. The creamy white flowers open in the evening and shut again by morning. Native to South America and the West Indies, night-blooming jasmine grows well in containers and needs infrequent care.
Plant night jasmine in a container with drainage holes to ward against root rot. Seattle PI recommends a 3-gallon container. Use a sterile potting soil. As your jasmine plant grows, repot it into a larger container every one to two years, changing out the old potting soil for fresh soil. Always move up one container size at a time.
Night-blooming jasmine does best in full sun and will develop less flowers if given more shade. Place the plant outdoors in full sun or indoors in a south-facing window.
Water night-blooming jasmine thoroughly, then allow the plant to dry out. Add water until the potting soil becomes saturated and you see water flow out the drainage holes in your container. Wait until the soil becomes crumbly and dry to the touch before watering again. Stick your finger down in the soil to check the moisture content below the surface, and water only when this soil grows dry. If you like, mulch the surface of the container with mulch or pebbles to help the soil retain moisture longer.
Containers of night-blooming jasmine can remain outdoors all year round for gardeners in USDA Hardiness Zones 8 to 11. If Zones 8 or 9 experience frost, the plant will die back but will regenerate, notes Floridata. Gardeners in cooler locations will need to bring the container indoors in fall and winter, moving the plant indoors when nighttime temperatures fall to 50 F.
Place the container indoors in a draft-free room that's warm but not stuffy (at least 50 F). Ensure the plant receives maximum light; supplement natural light with a fluorescent or incandescent plant light so the jasmine receives at least eight hours of light per day. Continue to water night-blooming jasmine following the same schedule. Depending on the dryness of your house, the plant may dry out faster or you may notice no difference.
Prune night-blooming jasmine in the spring to keep the plant's size in check. Remove dead or damaged branches with anvil pruners. Then cut branches that rub up against other limbs. Thin out the old branches that produce fewer leaves and flowers, and remove branches from crowded areas to open up the air canopy to light and air. Clip back the tips of long branches to lateral branches to control the plant's size.