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Darrell Blackwelder: Fences and roadways are a-bloom

Yellow jessamine/Carolina jessamine (Gelsemium sempervirens) is now in full bloom on fences and trees along roadsides in North and South Carolina. South Carolina’s state flower has very prolific, colorful yellow blooms on twisting vines that reach heights up to 20 feet.

Carolina jessamine. Photo by Darrell Blackwelder

When established, the vine is a vigorous grower, adapting to light shade or full sun, however more flowers are produced when planted in areas of full sun.

One of many ornamental features is the bloom’s sweet floral scent which attracts bumble bees and butterflies.

The foliage habit of yellow jessamine is very ornate with slender, shiny evergreen leaves one to three inches long.

The vine’s growth habit, color, and beautiful scent allows utilization along decks, fencing, patios or entrance areas. The vine also adapts well in containers complimenting other plant materials. The vine’s growth habit also allows adaptation to steep slope landscapes as a groundcover.

There are many different cultivars of the vine, some with varying flower and foliage habits. (Gelsemium sempervirens) ‘Pride of Augusta’ features double blooms resembling a miniature rose. Other cultivars feature different flower colors, growth habits and foliage.

Go to https://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheet/carolina-jessamine/ for more detailed information on this wonderful flowering vine.

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