How to Prune a Night Blooming Jasmine
Night Blooming Jasmine, known botanically as Cestrum nocturnum, presents a vining evergreen perennial prized for its richly scented flowers and deep green glossy leaves. It is not technically a jasmine but a member of the nightshade family that includes potatoes and tomatoes. It resembles the appearance and growth habit of many jasmines species, hence its common name. Night Blooming Jasmine produces small white pendulous flowers that emit their scent only at night and climb readily when trained over a support structure. It does not require pruning for bloom but can withstand significant pruning and will quickly regenerate itself.
Prune your jasmine lightly throughout the growing season as needed to remove dead branches, broken vines, discolored foliage or signs of disease. Cut the damaged vines down to the point of healthy tissues and pull the cuttings from the plant mass and compost or discard.
Reduce the height and spread of your Night Blooming Jasmine as desired in the spring after any threat of frost has passed. Remove no more than one-third of the plant's overall mass in any one pruning session to prevent stress and shock.
Rejuvenate old wood on the plant that has lost its foliage by cutting back up to 1/3 of the leafless canes down to the crown of the plant in the spring. Pull out all of the old wood and compost or discard. New green growth will sprout and fill out the bare areas.
Prune Night Blooming Jasmine
Night-blooming jasmine is a fragrant, flowering shrub. The white, tube-like flowers are tiny, but the scent is encompassing and vast. The plant is not particularly impressive when not in bloom, but is an evergreen in most climates with thick glossy green leaves. Night-blooming jasmine is also referred to as jessamine and produces a mounded shrub composed of vine-like branches. The jasmine should be pruned when flowering has finished. The plant can also be cut back to 3 feet from the ground annually to force new healthy shoots and prolific blooms. A 3- to 4-inch section of the stem is cut and the leaves are removed from one inch at the cut end. The soil pH for jasmine is between 5.5 and 6.5 and should be checked with a soil test before the plant is placed in the soil. The soil can be amended with lime to sweeten it or make it more base, and with sulfur to add acidity.
- Long-blade shears
- Texas A&M University Extension: Jasmine
- USDA Plant Database Profile: Cestrum Nocturnum
- Backyard Gardener: Cestrum Nocturnum
- Floridata: Cestrum Nocturnum; Steve Christman; May 15, 2006
- Tropical Shrubs: Cestrum Nocturnum; Horace F. Clay, James C. Hubbard, Rick Golt
- South Austrailian Government: Cestrum Nocturnum