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Friday, August 20, 2010

How to Care & Cultivate Water Jasmine (Wrightia Religiosa) Part 2


It feels like ages when I actually started this plant from seed to this point when I can finally enjoy the flower. I never imagine the moment to see these blooms, masses of pendant, tiny white flowers cascade at the end of each branches. 

There are many varieties of this water jasmine, this is the most common & the easiest one to maintain compared to rest - the small & medium leaf ones also the double-layered petaled ones. Often these are used to make bonsai or you can actually find few of these type sold in the nursery in a bonsai pot. 

My guess is those must be of the small leaf type and they are slow to grow and rarely produce seed pods. One of the things I enjoy the most is stripping of the leaves of this plant (now its more like a semi-tree) To see the exposed branches and leaving the cascading branches gives that mystical look in the garden. 

Finally it had blessed me with flowers (which I had almost given up hope - thinking this must be a sterile type - never producing flowers) Probably it must be the change of location - where it get a good amount of sunlight compared to the earlier location. 

I had placed dumbcanes at the background giving this one a very good focus point of depth and colour. (if not, it would be the boring I might strip off the leaves again, probably after they have finished their flowering. 


The Key for strong and beautiful blooms for this particular Jasmine is Pruning.

One of the most challenging part for this shrub is pruning. They do grow extremely fast and become very unruly if not proper care is not given - especially when it comes to growth factor, this plant focus more on branching more stem and over growth rather than blooms which can be one of the down-side coming from this ever blooming plant.

However with the right pruning method and keeping it trimmed and manageable size - this one can be such a beauty. As shown here - the appearance of the blooms can last at least for few months until the next pruning session is done to maintain the blooming cycle from interruption.

This consideration applies very accurately when the plant is matured and had grown for years - that is if it is not flowering in its full potential. Other factors involving lighting / watering / feeding is also essential and necessary.


I had found this one seemed to be a hardy plant with strong resistant to pest attack in comparison to many other floral plant. However at times mealybugs are found around the flowerbud farmed by ants and occasionally sap sucking insects too are found at the bottom of the leaves.

Occasionally I had come across that if the plant is anyway stressed or lacking nutrients may face some damage on it's foliage but rarely fatal to the plant. 

Keeping the plant - Pruned and Compact does make the plant focused on its blooming cycle and also able to take immediate action if any unruly pest attack where pruning is much easily handled rather than spraying pesticide all over the plant.

Apart from this factor, other matters are very much similar with most tropical garden plants.


Propagation can be done but stem cutting, stripping off the bottom leaves and poking it into a deep pot with a rich potting soil. Keep it in shade until you notice a new leaves growth.

Another method is to put the cutting into perlite medium (soaked in water) 
Once taken roots, it should be carefully transplanted into a good potting mix.
Another option is to look out for a sucker that appears from the root base. 
This happens if the plant is very established and has a huge root system.

Also I had noticed that this particular one can be very challenging to propagate if done wrongly - these are difficult to roots easily. Another alternative is seed propagation or marcotting - however it is too tedious that it would be much easier to just purchase the plant from a nursery that going through a lot trouble of trail and error in getting it right for the first time.

In most cases, these are cultivated using seed propagation as they are trained as bonsai plants even at the very young sapling stage as they form great structure and root formation. 

However apart of pruning of the branches, the stripping of the leaves is also important. As shown in the pictures above of how well it had grown and how I had stripped off the leaves - creating like a autumn shedding leaves only here - I had done it manually. You can use scissors or any other tools necessary. 

After couple of years doing the same process - the Jasmine had finally blessed me with thousands of blooms that had flood the whole garden with mesmerising fragrance throughout the day and night. It was indeed like a deity had visited and blessed me in my garden.

It was as if a Garden of One Thousand Buddha Flowers Bloomed in my Humble Garden.

If you are considered cultivating this particular Jasmine,  I would strongly recommend for you to cultivate these if you have the space and open bright sun for them to grow. The fragrance is very mesmerising and it is true, they do invoke the sense of sacred and sense of virtue and holiness as these gives out such pure fragrance around the garden. 

Also, Do click on the link below for more information on 
Other Types of  Tropical Fragrant Flowers:


Unknown said...

I have lots of these jasmine plants in my garden too. They sprout like weeds from root runners mostly. They are really robust and can take a lot of abuse (I mean hard pruning. Ants love them to death. Will post some fotos in my blog later.

Stephanie said...

Those pretty flowers smells really nice! I hope the plant will reward you will many more blooms. I am sure it was ages ago... started this from seed... wow good job James!

Autumn Belle said...

You must be so lucky to enjoy the beautiful fragrance of this plant during the weekends. I have seen quite a no. of Wrightia religiosa being used as bonsai at Floria 2010. Pruning shaped the branches so beautifully and some of the plants are are practically overflowing with white fragrance blooms. A sacred plant to Buddhists.

Bangchik and Kakdah said...

I grew these before. And they behaved well in pots. It is nice to them flowering, with tiny flowers dangling down sweetly.... Now I want to grow them again! ~bangchik

p3chandan said...

I know this plant n love the sweet white flowers but why are they called water jasmine, cos I dont see them as an aquatic plant, its more like a favourite bonsai plant.

Rosie Nixon Fluerty said...

I've never seen one of these types of Jasmine before - its lovely looking when the lower leaves are taken off and it looks so graceful and elegant in the way that it holds those clusters of blooms. I wonder why it has the name "water" in its name?

J.C. said...

Hi James, I love this Wrightia Religiosa. Their blooms exude sweet fragrance in the evening. In the day, these blooms attract honey bees, moths and butterflies. The bees even made a bee hive as many of them came to visit my Wrightia.

Your Wrigtia requires a good pruning. Keep the main stem. Decide where you want to keep the leaves and flowers growing. You can shape the plants into bonsai easily. Just trim, trim, trim! That's what my neighbour's mom told me to do. I was hesitant but the consequence of the harsh pruning produces a neat an bonsai-looking plant. Regular pruning is done to keep the plant in shape. Your plant has a strong mature stem now. So keep it tall and the side branches should be kept shorter. Let leaves grow at the end of each short branches.

ROUGH.ROSA said...

Pretty jasmine. Think I've never seen this before or probably never took notice. But your jasmine makes me wanna smell one.:) My hubby grows the small bonsai type which flowers are so tiny. I can't appreciate those but I do appreciate the bonsai like nature it presents. Good luck in trimming and training yours!

James David said...

Stiletto - Glad to note that you got this jasmine too, will check your garden shortly.

Stephanie - A very long wait actually that finally rewarded with blooms.

Belle - The fragrance is so captivating, almost lulls you to a relax and calm tone.

Aaron & J.c. - Thanks for the tips on pruning, will do so once they stop blooming.

Bangchik - Do grow them, you will never regret having them.

P3Chandran & leavesnbloom - Seriously, I have no idea why they are called water jasmine nor why are they also considered sacred.
Hoping someone might enlighten me on this.

Rough Rosa - I like to have one bonsai plant but perhaps its because of its flowers that I'm interested than a stunned tree.

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

What a pleasure to see beautiful blooms on the plant that you started from a tiny seed! Congratulations, James!

Anonymous said...

I found my brother-in-law 's wrightia religiosa survived the mega flood in 2011. The name might relate to that, maybe

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My Malaysian Tropical Garden mainly focused on unique and colorful plants ranging from rare to common plants all around the tropical belt across the world. Ideal for inspiration for challenging areas in the garden space - indoor gardening, balcony gardening and small green spaces especially for ariods, bromeliads, begonias, edibles, cascading & vertical garden plants, succulents & cacti, orchids, together with both shade and sun loving plants.

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