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Cestrum nocturnum

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Popular name: Lady-of-the-night, flower-of-the-night, jasmine-of-the-night, queen-of-the-night, coirana, coerana, green jasmine 

Scientific name: Cestrum nocturnum 

Family: Solanaceae

Gender: Cestrum

Plant Type:  Perennial

Origin: Tropical America

Synonym: Cestrum leucocarpum, Cestrum parqui 

 

Description: The lady of the night is a bushy plant, with a semi-woody texture and very popular due to the intoxicating aroma of its flowers. It has an erect and branched stem, with sinuous branches, erect at first, but becoming pendulous at the ends. Medium-sized, usually 1.5 meters, but can reach up to 4 meters in height. Its leaves are simple, evergreen, oval to lanceolate, shiny, leathery and supported by long petioles. The abundant inflorescences appear in spring and summer, carrying numerous tubular flowers, cream-green in color, which exude an intense perfume, especially at night. The berries that follow are berries, white in color, translucent.

 

Environment: The lady of the night is a vigorous and fast growing plant, usually used alone, but it does well in small groups. It is an indispensable piece in aromatic gardens, "of the senses" and butterfly gardens. It can also be grown as a tree and a vine, through pruning and staking, thus perfuming sidewalks, patios and covering arbors, arches, trellises, among other supports. To attenuate its strong perfume, it should be planted in partial shade, in this way its flowering will be less intense.

 

Flowering: Numerous tubular flowers, greenish-cream in color, which exude an intense perfume, especially at night.

 

Temperature: It does not tolerate salinity, strong frosts or intense cold.

 

Light: It should be grown in full sun or partial shade, in fertile, drainable soil, enriched with organic matter and irrigated regularly.

 

Watering: Water moderately, but regularly.

 

Fertilizing: During the period of active growth, they should be fertilized fortnightly with a appropriate fertilizer,

 

Advice: It can also be planted in vases, with more frequent fertilization and watering. Pruning should be carried out after the main flowering.

It should not be used near bedroom windows, especially in rooms for sensitive people and children. Its pungent fragrance is said to be one of the strongest among plants; some people find it cloying. The flowers attract several species of bees and butterflies. 

 

Attention, all parts of the plant are toxic and can cause vomiting, irritation of the mucous membranes and hallucinations, among other symptoms.

 

Cestrum nocturnum

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