Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cestrum

Cestrum
A genus of deciduous or evergreen, shrubs or small trees that are part of the larger nightshade family.
Most species thrive in full sun to partial shade on just about any fertile, well drained soils that are moist during summer. Propagation is from seed or softwood cuttings.

* photos taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


Cestrum aurantiacum ( Orange Cestrum )
A semi-evergreen to evergreen, scrambling, large shrub, reaching a maximum size of 20 x 10 feet, that is native from Mexico to Guatemala. It can be kept pruned as a more tidy shrub.
The aromatic, ovate leaves, up to 7 x 3 inches in size, are bright green. The leaves are slightly hairy at first then becoming smooth.
The orange flowers are borne 10 to 15 on terminal clusters, up to 4 inches wide, during spring and summer. They often repeat bloom during autumn.
Fleshy white berries follow.
Hardy zones 8 to 12.

Cestrum diurnum ( Day Jessamine )
A fast growing, small tree, reaching a maximum size of 35 x 38 feet, that is native to tropical America and the Caribbean.
The elliptical leaves, up to 6 x 2 inches in size, are bright green.
The white, tubular flowers are borne up to 20 on a panicle that is up to 4 inches in length. The flowers are fragrant during the daytime.
They are followed by small, purple berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12. It is moderately salt tolerant and very drought tolerant.

Cestrum elegans ( Red Cestrum )
Also called Cestrum purpureum. A fast growing, arching shrub, reaching a maximum size of 13 x 10 feet, that is native to tropical forests of Mexico. Some records include: 5 years - 10 x 6.5 feet.
The aromatic or oblong leaves, up to 7 x 3 inches in size, are hairy and olive-green.
The red to bright purple, tubular flowers are borne on dense, terminal panicles during summer to fall.
They are followed by rounded, purplish-red berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 10.

'Smithii'
Lance-shaped leaves are orange to scarlet-red flowers.

Cestrum 'Newellii'
A fast growing, arching shrub, reaching a maximum size of 13 x 10 feet. It can become invasive in some regions. Some records include: 5 years - 10 x 6.5 feet.
The aromatic, narrowly-ovate leaves, up to 4 inches in length, are hairy deep green.
The unscented, rich deep red flowers are borne on clusters up to 5 inches in length. They may appear throughout the year in mild climates.
They are followed by rounded, deep red berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12.

Cestrum nocturnum ( Night-Scented Jessamine )
A fast growing, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 20 x 13 ( rarely over 12 ) feet, that is native to the Caribbean. It has become invasive in some parts of the world including Australia.
The thick leaves, up to 8 x 2 inches in size, are bright green.
The abundant, very fragrant, bright greenish-yellow, tubular flowers are borne summer into late autumn. The scent can be detected as far away as 50 feet during night.
They are followed by ovoid white berries.
Hardy zones 9 to 12 ( possibly even 7 & 8 as a perennial on protected sites with deep winter mulch ).

Cestrum 'Orange Peel'
The very vigorous hybrid between Cestrum diurnum and C. nocturnum. Reaches up to 12 x 10 feet, or up to 8 x 8 feet if grown as a perennial.
The lance-shaped leaves are glossy mid-green.
The fragrant, bright orange tubular flowers appear late spring through mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 ( perennial in zone 7 ) in full sun to partial shade.

* photo taken on June 19 2016 in Elkridge, MD

* photo taken on July 5 2016 in Elkridge, MD


Cestrum parqui ( Green Cestrum )
A fast growing, suckering, upright, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 18 x 10 feet, that is native to Chile. Some records include: 5 years - 5 x 6.5 feet. It can become an invasive weed in some warmer climate regions.
The lance-shaped to elliptical leaves, up to 6 x 1.7 inches in size, are mid-green.
The abundant, bright yellow, tubular flowers are borne on terminal racemes throughout most of the year. The flowers are fragrant at night.
They are followed by purplish-brown berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12 ( 7b as a perennial on protected sites with deep winter mulch...prunings from the old christmas tree makes a good protective mulch ).

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