By Julie Christensen
Looking for a fast growing, low-maintenance plant for your southern garden? The star jasmine might be just the thing. Also known as confederate jasmine, star jasmine is hardy in USDA plant hardiness zones 7B through 10.
Actually, star jasmine is not really jasmine at all, but belongs to the Trachelospermum genus. It’s a bit slow to start, but grows vigorously after the first year. Star jasmine has small, glossy, dark green leaves that are evergreen foliage in warm climates. The fragrant white jasmine flowers appear in April through June, depending on your climate.
Star jasmine is a versatile plant. It has a twining habit and becomes a strong climbing vine when tied to a support — it can even make an attractive living fence. Grow it on a front porch or allow it to twine up trees. It is an excellent choice to cover an eyesore, such as an old shed or fence, or let it tumble down walls and terraces. It will not attach to masonry without additional support.
Star jasmine plants can also be used as a great ground cover. Simply pinch it back to control its growth. Treated this way, the plant will remain 12 to 18 inches high. Alternatively, you can grow it as a houseplant or container plant or even in hanging outdoor baskets.
Growing Conditions for Star Jasmine
Star jasmine with its green leaves does best in full sun, although it tolerates partial shade, especially in hot, dry weather. Give houseplants filtered sun, such as behind a curtain, during bright summer months. In the winter, move star jasmine to a bright, sunny window.
Star jasmine isn’t picky about soil. It grows all types of soil, sand, clay or loamy soil and tolerates both acidic and alkaline soil. It grows best in moderately moist soils, though, so it’s a good idea to dig a little compost or leaf mold into the soil prior to planting. Space the plants 4 feet apart. Keep the soil moist throughout the first growing season as the roots become established. After planting, add two inches of mulch to conserve moisture in dry conditions. Once established, star jasmine tolerates some drought.
The best time to fertilize star jasmine is in spring as new growth emerges, with an all-purpose fertilizer. Follow package directions carefully. Star jasmine generally won’t need additional fertilizer, unless the plant has light green or yellow leaves, which indicates a nutrient deficiency. Avoid over-fertilizing star jasmine, which will result in vigorous leafy growth with few blooms. The fragrant flowers are star shaped and are one of the best features, so this is important. Another common cause of limited blooming is a lack of sunlight. If plants don’t bloom after the first year, consider moving them to a sunnier location.
Star jasmine can become invasive, especially in warm, moist conditions. Cut vines back to 18 inches after flowering to control its growth. Prune star jasmine grown as a groundcover throughout the year as it becomes unruly. Pinch back houseplants as needed to control growth.
Star jasmine suffers few disease or pest problems. Small, scale-like growths may look like a disease, but are actually scale insects, tiny insects that form in colonies on many plants. These insects pierce the stems and leaves to suck out the juices of the plant. In small numbers, they won’t cause harm, but large colonies can stunt or even kill star jasmine. Additionally, scale secretes honeydew, a sticky, clear substance which in turn attracts sooty mold, a black or grey fungus. Treat scale with an insecticidal soap or insecticidal oil when new growth emerges. Plant star jasmine so air circulates freely and thin the plants when they become crowded to prevent fungal diseases. Rabbits and deer sometimes feed on the green leaves and white flowers of star jasmine, although the plant’s fast growth helps it recover quickly from damage caused by animals.
Almost any variety of star jasmine (trachelospermum jasminoides) will thrive, but ‘Madison’ is a hardy plant recommended for zones 7 and 8. For fall foliage, plant ‘Japonicum.’ The white-veined leaves turn bronze in the fall. Another one worth trying is ‘Variegatum.’ This hardy plant has green leaves edged with red.
Common Questions and Answers About Star Jasmine/Confederate Jasmine
by Erin Marissa Russell
Do you cut back Confederate jasmine?
Confederate jasmine is a fast-growing vine, it grows so quickly that it needs pruning to manage its size and keep it where you want it. Use clean, sterilized tools and perform your pruning right after the jasmine has flowered and blooms have faded. (Clean and sterilize your tools after cutting any diseased areas before you continue pruning.) To encourage the Confederate jasmine to grow fuller and more compact, you can cut it back to just beyond where it was pruned the year before. Otherwise, cut any branches that are broken, damaged, dead, or appear diseased. Remove branches that cross others, cause congestion, or grow outward. Pruning helps keep the plant healthy by allowing air circulation and sunlight to reach the interior foliage.
Does Confederate jasmine bloom all summer?
Confederate jasmine (trachelospermum jasminoides) begins to bloom in May and continues blooming through June, blooming best in locations with direct sunlight. The flowers on jasmine vines have a sweet fragrance.
Does Confederate jasmine die in winter?
Confederate jasmine can withstand temperatures down to 10 degrees Fahrenheit without dying. Once temperatures drop below 32 degrees, you may notice the color of your Confederate jasmine’s foliage change from green to a bronze hue. Once temperatures reach 10 degrees, the leaves will begin to drop off the plant. In the winter months, if the weather does not warm up and temperatures stay at or below 10 degrees, your Confederate jasmine will die back to the woody parts of the stems. Exceptionally harsh winters or sustained low temperatures can cause Confederate jasmine to die down to the roots. This means that confederate jasmine vine is considered to be fairly cold hardy.
In the event of a particularly cold spell, you can provide some protection for your jasmine vines by watering deeply and covering it with a layer of mulch four or five inches deep. Should your Confederate jasmine be damaged by the cold, after things have warmed up a little, prune to remove any broken or damaged stems to keep vermin or disease from using the damaged areas as an easy access point. If the jasmine has been damaged by the cold all the way down to the ground, you may need to cut it back all the way to ground level, then cover the roots with mulch and wait until spring to find out whether new growth sprouts (which means that the roots lived). Once new growth appears, provide the Confederate jasmine with a balanced fertilizer.
Does Confederate jasmine need sun?
Confederate jasmine has a bit of flexibility when it comes to the plant’s sun needs. It does very well in full sun but can also grow successfully in part sun or partial shade. The more sun a Confederate jasmine is provided, the more bountiful its sweetly scented star-like flowers white flowers will be, so look for a location with full sun for the best results.
Does star jasmine have deep roots?
The root system of star jasmine vines proliferate with runners, so wherever the plant touches the ground, it puts down roots. These roots create a network that grows deep and covers the entire area where the plant grows. It’s the Confederate jasmine’s root system that is responsible for its tendency to spread, which is what makes it invasive.
Does star jasmine need a trellis?
You can grow star jasmine without a trellis as a ground cover, or you can train it to grow up a trellis or other support. Make sure your trellis is located somewhere that gets between full sun and partial shade so the star jasmine will thrive. The soil should drain well and be rich, including organic material. Plant the star jasmine a few inches from the trellis. Shrub varieties of jasmine are not naturally climbing plants, so you’ll need to cut some strips of soft cloth, which you’ll use to tie the jasmine to the trellis and train it to climb.
As the star jasmine grows, weave its long, trailing branches through the holes in the trellis, wrapping the stems of the plant around the slats of the trellis in the same direction that they naturally bend. Tie the jasmine loosely to the trellis with the cloth; do not pull the fabric tight or cinch it when you tie the knot. Continue tying the branches to the trellis as the jasmine vines grow. If your star jasmine is not a shrub variety but a true vine, you’ll just need to wrap the vines around the trellis without tying to secure them. This type of plant is a twining vine, also known as a bine, which is one that climbs by its shoots growing in a helix to climb.
How do you fertilize Confederate jasmine?
If your soil provides enough nutrition for your Confederate jasmine, you won’t need to provide it with additional fertilizer. You’ll know the plant is running low on nutrients if the leaves begin fading to yellow. Don’t fertilize a Confederate jasmine that’s a new addition to your garden or has been transplanted, however. Allow the jasmine to become well established, and provide fertilizer in the spring, when the plant begins to put out new growth.
Feed Confederate jasmine with a 12-4-6 fertilizer blend at a dosage of one and a half pounds per 100 square feet of yard space. Apply the fertilizer evenly throughout your yard, avoiding the immediate vicinity of the jasmine plant. Leave at least three inches of space between your Confederate jasmine plant and the fertilizer you’re putting down. When you’re done applying fertilizer, water deeply to help incorporate it into the soil. Give newly established Confederate jasmine vine a smaller dose of one tablespoon of fertilizer per plant.
How fast does Confederate jasmine grow?
Confederate jasmine plants can grow at a rate of three to six feet each year. However, your Confederate jasmine plant will spend its first year of growth developing its underground root system, without visibly developing much above ground. It will increase production of above-ground foliage in its second year and, by its third year of growth, will be producing the typical three to six feet per year.
How often does Confederate jasmine bloom?
Confederate jasmine has fragrant white flowers that bloom each year, beginning its flowering season in May and continuing through June.
How often should I water Confederate jasmine?
Confederate jasmine growing in containers will need to be watered at a different rate than Confederate jasmine planted directly in the ground. Although Confederate jasmine is drought resistant and can tolerate a dry climate, providing it with regular water will help the plant to flourish. Give Confederate jasmine planted directly in the soil a deep watering when the top one to two inches of soil are dry. Water until the soil is wet to five or six inches deep.
You can test the moisture level of the soil by sticking your finger into the soil near your jasmine plant. If dirt clings to your skin, it’s still moist. Confederate jasmine growing in containers will need to be watered more frequently. Hydrate potted Confederate jasmine when the top layer of the soil has dried out, and keep watering until the moisture drips from the container’s drainage holes.
Is Confederate jasmine evergreen?
The leaves of the Confederate jasmine vine are evergreen. However, the plant’s foliage may begin to turn bronze instead of green when temperatures drop to freezing (32 degrees Fahrenheit) or below. At 10 degrees Fahrenheit or colder, the leaves will start to drop from Confederate jasmine plants.
Is Confederate jasmine invasive?
Confederate jasmine is not listed on the USDA’s list of introduced, invasive, and noxious plants. However, it has a tendency to spread heartily that leads some gardeners to call it invasive. Confederate jasmine vine tendency is to spread is due to its deep root system, which uses long runners to bring the plant nutrients and claim new territory.
Is Confederate jasmine poisonous to dogs, cats, or humans?
No parts of the Confederate jasmine plant are poisonous to humans or pets.
Is star jasmine annual or perennial?
Star jasmine is a perennial plant, which means it returns the next spring or persists over the winter. You can get more information in our article Annuals vs. Perennials: What Is the Difference?
Is star jasmine the same as Confederate jasmine?
Confederate jasmine and star jasmine are names for the same plant; both names refer to the plant whose botanical name is Trachelospermum jasminoides.
Want to learn more about growing Star Jasmine successfully?
Visit the following links:
Costa Farms covers Confederate Jasmine
Clemson Cooperative Extension covers Jasmine
Plant Jasmine to Scent Up Garden Evenings, from Oregon State University Extension
When she’s not writing about gardening, food and canning, Julie Christensen enjoys spending time in her gardens, which includes perennials, vegetables and fruit trees. She’s written hundreds of gardening articles for the Gardening Channel, Garden Guides and San Francisco Gate, as well as several e-books.
Hi, thank you for all the info
My husband planted a couple star jasmine plants in our plant bed. I am concerned that they a little too close to a pomegranate and a sugar apple trees, which are relatively young. They are only a feet away from each other. Does star jasmine make a good companion plant for my fruit trees or would it’s invasive root system cause trouble for my fruit trees?
Anant Gupta says
Thanks a lot for all the information.
Can we grow star jasmine in open fields without any support in large quantities for business purpose?
dennis finn says
My confederate jasmines all look dead with the brown leaves all over the plant. As spring comes, will the dead brown leaves fall off and new life come out or do you think the plants are dead? There is not one green leaf on the plant at this time.
Caletha Pindle says
I purchased several confederate/star jasmine vines from Lowe’s this summer and did not re-pot them. Now that we have had a few freezes, I brought them indoors. Many of the leaves have turned red and yellow but there are still a good number of green leaves. Should I re-pot them now and feed them before putting them out again or should I keep them inside through the winter. I live in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Linda Dupler says
Mine has done the same. Looks dead. Completely brown. Will is come back? It has grown and bloomed like crazy for 5 years. Then suddenly after blooming this year, BAM.
My jasmine is the same,, complete with brown leaves did take leaves off freshen up soil and water deeply but no new leaves.
The Jasmine in the picture isn’t the Star variety…
Are the red berries in fall poisonous?
lol what red berries??
Does it grow by pieces or do you need the root?
James Benzmiller says
Will it grow/ survive in Western WI – about 1-1/2 he’s due East of Minneapolis? Thank you
It is not hardy in the north; however I grow it as a houseplant in south-central Indiana. I actually keep it in a very cool, and unlit basement garage over winter, watering it occasionally, and taking it outdoors after danger of hard frosts and have kept it for several years. It blooms abundantly in late spring through early summer. I prune it after blooming to keep it bushy. It would do well in the house over winter, too, if I had room, but seems to appreciate a cool, dormant period in winter
We live in Illinois near the Wisconsin border. I bought 3 of these plants early this summer and thought they would have shipped them sooner. Unfortunately we just got them in the mail today. I saw you keep yours in the basement over the winter. Do you suggest I put them in the ground this late in the season or just keep them indoors until next spring ?
Mark Gresham says
Does star jasmine bloom on new growth[ last years growth], old growth, or both?
Thank you so much for the comprehensive article. After reading it I feel well prepared to care for my Star Jasmine. If this is typical of the Gardening Channel’s posts, I will definitely be coming back to learn more about my other plants.
sue ragusa says
I planted three jasmine plants about two years ago and they are still tiny. seem to be okay, but no growth. any suggestions?
Jessie Brown says
Is it easy to start cuttings?
Lorraine Delia says
I just bought 2 large star jasmine plants from costco. I live in new york. Can I plant them in the ground? Would they survive after winter?
Martha Fennell says
CONFEDERATE JASMINE WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Confederate Sam says
Shut up, loser. Nobody cares about your feelings. Go cry somewhere else.
Louise Harding says
D Taylor says
Really? Do you want to change that too?
S D says
All 5 of my star Jasmine are so easy to manage. And they are beautiful. All 5 grow to cover their individual 6 x 10 ft trellis, and then gracefully droop approx 3 ft down from a fence top, for another 18 linear feet. All are covered w blooms from May thru Aug. I’ve never fertilized. One is in shade, one in sun, and 3 get a mix of sun/shade.
I save all the dropped leaves/flowers to cover the roots. That’s how Nature does it. In Portland OR
we’ve had a couple freezes, and many days of 90°. Even thru super hot days reaching 115, – no issues.
The bees & hummers love the Jasmine, I love them, and I hope you will too.
Beverly Benner says
Why is star jasmine called Confederate jasmine?
Image result for star jasmine vs confederate jasmine
Confederate Jasmine comes from southeast Asia, and according to several sources around the internet, the common name actually refers to the Malay Confederacy. Regardless of the origins of the name, Confederate Jasmine does indeed grow very well in the southeast.A
Jeannie Blackwelder says
My star jasmine is currently in a pot and has a lot of flowers. I live in NE MS. When can I plant it in the ground and will it withstand our winters either in the pot or the ground. It currently sits facing the east and is doing beautifully! First time to ever have one and I love it!
Roanoke Otakus says
I just want to know how I ended up with this plant when I never bought it and never saw it on my property until two years ago (living at my house for 15+yrs now). I noticed a vine growing on my front walk fence about two years ago and left it alone to see if it was morning glories or something akin to that. I am very happy that the star jasmine showed up, but I am totally mystified as to how it got on the front walk fence and now is all down my side fence and the holly directly in front of the house. I have seen the star jasmine about 3 or 4 blocks away as I walk my dogs, but there is none that I have seen within several houses of my yard. How the heck did it get here? 😮
Irene Patten says
I have had my star jasmine for three years now,has been perfectly healthy
though only had a few flowers last year.
Unfortunately this year and last few weeks of severe frost,leaves have lost their
colour and dropping off,seems ok near ground.
Worried about it,thinking of spraying with soap spray,also giving a good feed.
What do you advise.
Does it support the winter canadian weather (snow, freeze) if. I plant it outside? Please answer me i just bought it and dont like to loose it.
donna polos says
I planted a star jasmine about 5 years ago right next to the house. It has totally covered the length of our house. It is massive. I am concerned about the root system since it has become so big. Will the roots get into my drain tiles?
Thank you for this informative article. I bought my Star Jasmine from Lowes three years ago in Georgia. I have it in a long wooden flower box growing up a trellis. This year I moved to Wichita KS and have it on my back patio. The zone is 6b and Im realizing I will have to bring it in for the winter all things considered. Do you have any advice for doing this successfully? And then how to reintroduce it back outside in the spring?
Can I plant my Confed. Jasmine at the base of a holly bush to have it grow throughout the holly without choking it?
I have bought a young star jasmin with a vine growing tightly around it. Can i cut this vine ti release it .