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Poet's Jasmine Can Begin and Cease, and Then Again Begin

February 24, 2001|ASSOCIATED PRESS

You might want more of your houseplants than just being green. Perhaps you would like some flowers and aroma from a jasmine plant.

Poet's jasmine (sometimes called winter jasmine) makes a nice hanging basket plant, becoming a ball of fragrant white blooms dense enough to almost hide the delicate leaves. This is the way the plants look when you buy them, but it takes a trick to get repeat performances winter after winter.

Jasmines like moist soils, so add an extra dose of peat moss to their potting mix. Part shade is sufficient in summer, and a sunny window is best in winter. Poet's jasmine is a particularly vigorous grower in summer, so it needs its trailing vines tucked into each other or a trellis, or clipped back periodically.

Don't cut anything after midsummer, or you also will be removing potential flower buds.

To get poet's jasmine to put on its starry winter show, make sure it knows autumn has come and gone. Do this by exposing it to cool temperatures and short days.

A month or so outdoors in cool autumn air, as long as temperatures are above freezing, should do the trick.

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