Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Jasminum officinale L.

Frost-hardy, vigorous, twining, woody, semi-deciduous climber with opposite, pinnate leaves, composed of 5-9 leaflets to 6cm long, and terminal umbel-like cymes of salverform, very fragrant white flowers, to 2cm across, in summer and autumn.  To 12m.  [RHSE, Hortus, Hilliers’].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘There is an elegance in the Jasmine which, added to its fragrance, renders it an object of universal admiration.  “It grows naturally at Malabar, and in several parts of India, yet has been long inured to our climate, so as to thrive and flower extremely well, but never produces any fruit in England.  It is easily propagated by laying down the branches, which will take root in one year, and may then be cut from the old plant, and planted where they are designed to remain: it may also be propagated by cuttings, which should be planted early in the autumn, and guarded against the effects of severe frosts.

When these plants are removed, they should be planted either against some wall, pale, or other fence, where the flexible branches may be supported.  These plants should be permitted to grow rude in the summer, otherwise there will be no flowers; but after the summer is past, the luxuriant shoots should be pruned off, and the others must be nailed to the support.

There are two varieties of this with variegated leaves, one with white, the other with yellow stripes, but the latter is the most common: these are propagated by budding them on the plain Jasmine; they require to be planted in a warm situation, especially the white-striped, for they are much more tender than the plain, and in very severe winters their branches should be covered with mats or straw to prevent their being killed.” Miller’s Gard. Di.’  [BM t.31/1787].  Probably introduced to England before 1543.  [PD].

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues [T.600/1843].


Published Jan 20, 2010 - 11:46 AM | Last updated Jul 28, 2010 - 02:43 PM

Figured are 5-foliate leaves and few-flowered raceme of white, star-like flowers.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.31, 1787.

Jasminum officinale L. | BM t.31/1787 | BHL

Family Oleaceae
Region of origin

Caucasus to China

Common Name

Common jasmine, True jasmine, Jessamine

Name in the Camden Park Record

Jasminum officinale - Common Jasmin 

Confidence level high