Orange Jessamine/Murraya paniculata
This relative of the Citrus is a well-shaped, shrubby plant from South-East Asia. It bears pretty, fragrant white blooms intermittently throughout the year – if the temperatures are warm enough – while its shape and evergreen, glossy leaves make it an excellent choice for the cool lounge or conservatory all year through. The name Orange Jessamine comes mostly from the scent of the flowers, but the leaves are also pleasantly aromatic. It is an amenable plant which can be carried into the living room when in flower, then moved back to a cooler environment to recover. Containerized plants occasionally produce red, glossy fruits.
Pot culture restricts the growth of this shrub to a manageable 1.2m (4ft); if grown in a greenhouse border or a very large container, such as a half-barrel, it may grow as tall as 2m (6ft).
For Winter flowers, a Winter minimum temperature of 18°C (64°F) is required, together with adequate levels of light. Otherwise, keep plants at about 13-15°C (55-60°F) in Winter, and provide plenty of ventilation in Summer once temperatures exceed 21 °C (70°F). In mild climates, the Orange Jessamine may be moved outdoors to a sheltered spot in Summer.
Provide this plant with good light: light shade is suitable, as is full sun, provided the plant is kept out of the midday sun in Summer.Plants in active growth should be given plenty of water: allow the surface of theto dry out before watering again, then water thoroughly. Never allow roots to become completely dry. In Winter, lower temperatures should be complemented by reduction in the frequency of watering.
Orange Jessamine requires a lot of humidity, and the likelihood of leaf drop will be reduced by regular misting. Also stand the pot on a tray of moisture-retentive pellets for additional humidity: ensure that the roots do not sit in water. Feed this shrub every two weeks during the growing period, using a proprietary housepfant food.
Repot the Orange Jessamine every Spring, using a free-draining, loam-based compost.
Large plants may be cut back hard in Winter -select a bud about 20cm (8in) from the plant base.
Whitefly will emerge from disturbed plants in great clouds: they cluster on the leaf undersides and are difficult to control. Select a suitable method of eradication.