Green Cestrum Cestrum parqui

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
willow-leaved jessamine

ABOUT

The plant commonly referred to as "green cestrum" or "willow-leaved jessamine" has a bushy, sprawling habit with long, slender branches. Its foliage consists of lance-shaped leaves that are a deep green color, with a smooth texture and prominent veins. The leaves are arranged alternately along the stems and have a slightly glossy appearance. During the blooming period, green cestrum produces clusters of small tubular flowers, which are yellowish-green and have a strong, sweet scent, especially noticeable at night. The flowers are attractive to nocturnal pollinators. Following the flowering phase, the plant bears berries that start out green and mature into a black or dark purple color. These berries are appealing to bird species but are toxic to humans and other mammals. The overall impression of green cestrum is of a lush and leafy plant with delicate, fragrant flowers that add a touch of elegance to its surroundings.

Plant Info
Care
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family

      Solanaceae

    • Synonyms

      Green Cestrum, Willow-leaved Jessamine, Hard Cestrum, Chilean Cestrum

    • Common names

      Cestrum parqui, Cestrum aurantiacum, Cestrum elegans, Cestrum laevigatum, Cestrum lanceolatum, Cestrum luridum, Cestrum ovatum, Cestrum pallidum, Cestrum parqui var. latifolium, Cestrum parqui var. ovatum, Cestrum parqui var. parqui, Cestrum parqui var. typicum, Cestrum schlechtendalii, Cestrum sendtnerianum, Cestrum undulatum.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle

      Perennials

    • Foliage type

      Semi-deciduous

    • Color of leaves

      Green

    • Flower color

      Yellow-green

    • Height

      6-8 feet (1.8-2.4 meters)

    • Spread

      6-8 feet (1.8-2.4 meters)

    • Plant type

      Shrub

    • Hardiness zones

      8

    • Native area

      South America

Benefits

  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental Value: Cestrum parqui, commonly known as green cestrum, is often used in gardens for its attractive foliage and yellow-green tubular flowers that bloom in the summer.
    • Wildlife Attraction: The flowers of the green cestrum can attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, contributing to the biodiversity of the garden ecosystem.
    • Shade Provider: With its dense foliage, the green cestrum can offer shade in gardens, providing a cool area during hot weather.
    • Scented Flowers: The flowers emit a strong fragrance, especially at night, which can add a pleasant scent to the garden environment.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, Cestrum parqui has good drought tolerance, making it suitable for xeriscaping and low-water landscapes.
    • Privacy Screen: Owing to its height and dense growth, it can be used to create a natural privacy screen in the garden.
    • Windbreak: It can act as a windbreak when planted in rows, protecting smaller plants from strong winds.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Analgesic: Cestrum parqui has been used traditionally to alleviate pain.
    • Anti-inflammatory: The plant may possess compounds with anti-inflammatory properties.
    • Sedative: There are accounts of its use as a sedative to help with insomnia or anxiety.
    • Antispasmodic: It could potentially relieve muscle spasms.
    However, it's important to note that the use of Cestrum parqui for medicinal purposes is not well documented in scientific literature, and its use can be potentially toxic if not used correctly. Always consult a healthcare professional before using any plant for medicinal purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Cestrum parqui, commonly known as green cestrum, can be planted as a living fence or hedge due to its fast-growing nature and dense foliage.
    • The aromatic leaves of green cestrum are used in some cultures to make a natural insect repellent by crushing and applying the leaves to the skin or hanging them in bunches to deter insects.
    • In some rural areas, branches of the green cestrum plant are sometimes used as a natural source of green dye for textiles.
    • The wood of green cestrum is sometimes harvested and used for making small handcrafts and as firewood, benefiting from its quick regrowth.
    • Due to its vigorous growth, the plant can be utilized for erosion control on steep slopes or riverbanks by stabilizing the soil with its root system.
    • The flowers of green cestrum are sometimes used in decorative arrangements and for making natural fragrances due to their strong nighttime scent.
    • In some regions, green cestrum is incorporated into permaculture gardens as a dynamic accumulator, drawing up nutrients from deep in the soil to the surface for other plants to access.
    • Green cestrum plants can be intercropped in agricultural lands to provide shade for shade-loving crops or as a windbreak to protect more delicate plants.
    • In some traditional ceremonies or cultural rituals, parts of the green cestrum plant may be used symbolically or as offerings.
    • The dense thickets created by green cestrum growth can provide habitat for birds and small wildlife, contributing to biodiversity in garden spaces.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Green Cestrum is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Green Cestrum is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Adaptability: Cestrum parqui, commonly known as Green Cestrum or Willow-leaved Jessamine, often symbolizes adaptability due to its hardy nature and ability to thrive in various conditions.
    • Warning: The plant, known to be toxic to livestock and humans, can represent a cautionary symbol, reminding us that not everything that is attractive is beneficial or safe.
    • Resilience: Green Cestrum's robustness and resilience to pests and diseases make it symbolic of overcoming adversity and enduring difficult situations.
    • Growth: As a fast-growing plant, it can also symbolize rapid growth and progress in one's endeavors.
    • Night Presence: Given that its flowers are more fragrant at night, Willow-leaved Jessamine can symbolize the idea of presence or influence that is felt more strongly in certain circumstances or times.

💧
Every 1-2 weeks
Water
☀️
2500 - 10000 Lux
Light
💦️
6%
Humidity
🪴
Every year
Repotting
🌱️
Spring-early summer
Propogation
✂️️
As needed
Pruning
  • water dropWater

    The Green Cestrum should be watered deeply but infrequently, typically you should allow the soil to become dry to the touch before watering again. During the growing season in spring and summer, watering once a week with approximately 1 to 1.5 gallons should be sufficient, depending on soil type and climate. In the fall and winter, reduce watering to every other week or less, as the plant's water requirements decrease. Always avoid soggy soil to prevent root rot; well-drained soil is key to the health of a Green Cestrum.

  • sunLight

    Green Cestrum thrives in full sun to partial shade, but for optimal growth and flowering, it prefers a location that receives several hours of direct sunlight daily. Ideally, place the Green Cestrum in a spot where it can get at least six to eight hours of sunlight. It can tolerate some light shade, but too much shade may reduce blooming and weaken the plant.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Green Cestrum prefers a moderate to warm climate and does best in temperatures ranging from 50 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. It can survive minimal frost but sustained temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit may damage or kill the plant. Ideally, keep the Green Cestrum in an area that maintains a temperature between 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal growth.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning Green Cestrum is important to maintain its shape, encourage bushier growth, and enhance flowering. It’s best to prune in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Remove dead or damaged branches, and trim back up to one-third of the previous year's growth to promote healthy, vigorous shoots. The plant responds well to pruning, so annual pruning is recommended for shaping and overall health.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Green Cestrum thrives in well-drained, loamy to sandy soil with pH between 6.0 and 7.5. A mix of two parts loam, one part sand, and one part compost is ideal for optimal growth.

  • plantRepotting

    Green Cestrum should be repotted every 2-3 years or when it outgrows its current pot, preferably in the springtime to allow for growth spurts.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Green Cestrum prefers moderate to high humidity levels, around 40-60%, which can be maintained with regular misting or a room humidifier.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Green Cestrum in bright, indirect light with some direct sun.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Green Cestrum in partial sun to light shade areas.

    • Hardiness zone

      8-10 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Cestrum parqui, commonly known as Green Cestrum, begins its life as a seed that germinates in warm, moist soil, usually in spring or early summer. The seedling stage involves developing roots and a basic stem structure while the plant establishes itself. As it enters the vegetative stage, Green Cestrum rapidly grows leaves and stems, becoming a small shrub. Flowering occurs in the mature stage, typically in the warm months, where it produces fragrant, yellow-green flowers that are pollinated by insects and possibly by wind, leading to the production of berries. The berries then mature, containing seeds that are dispersed by animals who eat them, completing the reproductive cycle. Green Cestrum can live for several years, and it can also spread vegetatively through rooting of the stems if they come into contact with soil.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-early summer

    • The most popular method of propagating Cestrum parqui, commonly known as Green Cestrum or Willow-leaved Jessamine, is through semi-hardwood cuttings. This technique typically involves taking cuttings from the plant during the summer months when the new growth has begun to mature and harden slightly. Cuttings should be approximately 4 to 6 inches (about 10 to 15 centimeters) in length and include several leaves. The lower leaves are removed, and the cut end of the cutting may be treated with a rooting hormone to encourage root development. The cutting is then planted in a well-draining soil mix, kept moist, and placed in a warm environment with indirect sunlight. With proper care, the cutting will develop roots and can eventually be transplanted into the garden.