Growing Orange Jasmine in the Home Garden

Add a Sweet Fragrance to Your Garden with the Orange Jasmine Shrub

The flowers of the orange jasmine do smell like orange blossoms.
Image by Starr Environmental under a Flickr Creative Commons Attribution License

Filling the air with a sweet smell like orange blossoms, orange jasmine is a welcome addition to any tropical garden. Also known as orange jessamine, mock orange or satinwood, orange jasmine (Murraya paniculata) is a compact evergreen shrub with shiny, deep green leaves and interesting, gnarled branches. Clusters of small, fragrant flowers bloom in spring, followed by bright reddish-orange berries in summer.

This lovely plant is a great choice if you’re looking to attract bees, birds or butterflies to your garden. Caring for Murraya orange jasmine is surprisingly simple.  

Latin Name:

This is known as Murraya paniculata and is included within the Rutaceae (citrus) family.

Common Names:

You may see this noted as orange jasmine, orange jessamine or chalcas.

Preferred USDA Hardiness Zones:

This species is best suites for growing in Zones 9-11. It originally comes from Asia and Australia.

Size & Shape:

At maturity this plant will be 8-12' tall and wide, creating a round shrub.

Exposure:

Orange jasmine plants require protection from hot, direct sunlight. When growing Murraya orange jasmine, locate the plant where it receives morning sunlight and afternoon shade, or alternatively, where it is in broken sunlight or dappled shade all day. Well-drained soil is critical, as orange jasmine doesn’t do well in waterlogged soil.

If your soil lacks drainage, improve soil conditions by digging in organic material such as compost, chopped bark or leaf mulch.

Foliage/ Flowers/Fruit:

The leaves are up to 2.75" long, oval, and a glossy green.

The flowers are very fragrant and smell like orange blossoms. Flowering will occur year-round.

The fruit is .5-1" long and red. It is prized by birds.

Design Tips for the Orange Jasmine:

This shrub is good for attracting bees and birds to the garden.

Orange jasmine can be trained into a small tree.

It can be used as a hedge, which will require pruning often when young since it grows rapidly.

Growing Tips for the Orange Jasmine:

Plant in well-drained soil. Make sure it is free of nematodes.

Water orange jasmine plants deeply whenever the top two inches of soil feels dry to the touch. As a general rule, once per week is about right. However, more frequent irrigation may be needed if you live in a hot climate, or if the orange jasmine plant is in a container. Never allow the plant to stand in muddy soil or water. Feed orange jasmine plants once every three to four weeks throughout the growing season using a fertilizer manufactured for evergreen plants. Alternatively, if the plant is in a container, apply a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer.

Propagation is through seeds and cuttings.

Maintenance/Pruning:

The orange jasmine grows very quickly while young and may need several prunings to keep its shape. You will also want to prune as needed to manage branches that are dead, damaged or diseased.

 Avoid harsh pruning: it’s best not to remove more than one-eighth of the shrub’s total growth per year.

Pests & Diseases:

Pests that you may see include:

  • Soil nematodes
  • Scales
  • Sooty mold
  • Whiteflies

This species usually has no problems with diseases.