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With its calming properties and pretty yellow flowers, Gelsemium sempervirens combines the useful with the pleasant.
Discover the properties of this medicinal plant and how to cultivate it!
In summary, what you need to know:
Family : Loganiaceae
Type : Vine
Height : 3.5 m
Exposure : Sunny
Ground : Rich and well drained
Foliage : Persistent -Flowering : Summer
Gelsemium sempervirens: California jasmine
As the name suggests, California jasmine is native to the United States, where it grows spontaneously.
This twining liana wraps around supports and reveals lanceolate, green, shiny and persistent leaves. This dark foliage is illuminated by golden yellow funnel flowers. Slightly scented, the flowers are composed of five petals.
A toxic plant with therapeutic virtues
These are the roots of the plant that contain active ingredients: gelsemine, gelsemicin and sempervirin. California jasmine has been known for centuries for its toxicity.
This is because the three powerful active ingredients, if consumed in too much quantity, cause tremors, inflammation of the respiratory system and paralysis. This is why it is used in very small amounts in homeopathic treatments. Thus, once the active ingredients have been diluted and the toxicity has disappeared, Gelsemium sempervirens acts as a calming agent.
It has anti-neuralgic, axiolitic, antispasmodic, analgesic and sedative properties.
Why use a homeopathic treatment based on Gelsemium?
Thanks to its multiple properties, California jasmine is used to fight against various ailments. It is prescribed for the flu to calm fever, tremors, body aches and chills.
As a soothing remedy, it is recommended for stress and anxiety. It thus helps to find sleep and limit the undesirable effects of hyperemotivity. Finally, pregnant women are encouraged to take this treatment to regulate contractions.
How do you grow California jasmine?
This beautiful plant is also planted for ornamental purposes. However, remember that it is poisonous to people and animals. It must therefore not be accessible for children in particular.
Sun, a rich and drained substrate are enough for the happiness of Gelsemium sempervirens. This frost plant should be grown indoors, preferably in a greenhouse or conservatory.
You will then have to plant it in a pot in the spring and run it on a trellis. You will take the pot out every year once the risk of frost has passed and return it for the winter.
Consider installing a drainage layer at the bottom of the container, which you cover with horticultural soil. Regions with mild winters can afford a crop in the ground. Favor a sunny spot and cover the base of the plant with mulch to protect it from the cold.
Each year in spring, add compost to provide the necessary nutrients for Gelsemium. Every 2-3 years, it's time to repot! Throughout the growing season (March to October), water regularly, keeping the soil cool but never soggy.
In pots, add liquid fertilizer once a month. In the ground, cut all the stems close to the ground before applying a good layer of mulch. For plants placed indoors, shorten longer stems and remove dead or mis-oriented wood before winter.
From the first frost, place your jasmine in a light, airy room that does not drop below 5 ° C.
Multiply Gelsemium sempervirens with cuttings
Cutting California jasmine is the best way to propagate it successfully. Here are the steps to follow:
- In summer, cut a 10cm section of a semi-hardened stem (between the wood and grass stage)
- Remove the leaves on the lower half of the stems
- Push the stems into a mixture of potting soil and sand
- Place the container in the shade in a warm place
- Moisten with a sprayer
- Cover with an inverted half bottle or a glass bell
- Keep the substrate moist
- In the fall, transplant into individual pots
- Bring them in at the first frost and plant them in their final place in spring