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Plumbago auriculata, a climbing shrub, native to Africa and sometimes even from Southern Europe, shows an interesting and fascinating aspect. We know it as blue jasmine and this name already makes it clear what kind of flowers it produces. Wonderful, delicate but also very colorful flowers.
The thin stems of the plumbago auriculata they can even reach 2 meters in length, are semi-woody and “decorated” with small leaves, with a pointed oval shape and a green but very light color. The flowering period of this climber is the summer one, from June onwards, when umbrellas of blue flowers, trumpet-like, with 5 petals appear.
Plumbago auriculata: characteristics
In addition to blue jasmine, the plumbago auriculata it is also called plumbago. Its best known characteristics, which make it recognizable, are the fact of being a climber, the length even up to 2-3 meters and the color of the flowers, sky blue, intense. Their shape recalls that of the jasmine inflorescences, they last a long time, until autumn, and they smell good. We often find the plumbago auriculata in flower beds and gardens as a decorative plant.
The plumbago capensis it is one of the most popular varieties in our parts as in the rest of Europe. Its woody stems are longer than the standard and it has a semi-climber appearance, always embellished with sky-blue flowers. If we want to host it in our garden or on our balconies, it is necessary to provide it with strong support, a good quality wooden grill to cling to.
This variety of Plumago also resists cold, down to -8 ° C, as long as you protect it a little, and it is also for this characteristic that it is particularly successful appreciated in our area. With its spread, cultivars with color variations have also sprung up: today we can choose between the classic, the "dawn" with white petals and the "Dark blue" with deep blue inflorescences.
When climbing, this shrub climbs like a pro, reaching heights that not all climbing plants can afford. This is also thanks to the consistency of the stems. Her origins are to be found in Africa, in the South, and for the capensis variety, in the area of the Cape of Good Hope from which it takes its name.
However, there are other species of Plumbago auricolata, some with large flowers, others with small flowers, and each with slightly different leaves but always oblong and light green. The most hasty start flowering in April, most of them in May and June, all of which last until September.
Cultivate the Plumbago auricolata it's pretty easy, you can start from seeds, but also more conveniently from a seedling purchased on Amazon. A set of 10 seedlings, costs 13 euros, of the Capensis variety, in pots.
Ideal exposure for the Plumbago
The plumbago must be planted in a position that can guarantee it a good number of hours exposed to sunlight. In the hottest periods of the year, you could move it to a more shaded position but never without light, otherwise you risk that it will no longer produce its beautiful flowers.
How much to water blue jasmine or plumbago
The plumbago is a plant suitable to withstand hot climates and long exposure to the sun. Nonetheless, if you want to admire its flowers at their full splendor, you will have to water it daily at least in the hottest months of summer.
You can improve the health of the leaves by also providing direct spraying with a spray in order to hydrate them without risking damaging the flower corollas which are very delicate.
To see a rich and continuous flowering, it is important to prune every year, to order but also to contain the "explosive" and generous development of this beautiful blue plant. The time to do this is immediately after flowering, with courage, with a pair of sharp scissors, intervening on all the stems of the bush at a height of about 30 cm from the ground.
It is a necessary operation not only for ensure quality flowering, but also to keep the plant from getting sick because it is rather delicate. It is good where the climate is warm and where it is loose, well-drained, sandy, slightly acidic soils.
As already mentioned for the Capensis variety, there can be gods Plumbago cultivar which feature darker colors than the classic sky blue or sky blue. We therefore find ourselves gods beautiful blue flowers, deep blue, for those who love strong colors.
You may also be interested in our following related articles:
- Climbing plants
- How to choose balcony plants
- Blue flowers