Murraya paniculata, commonly known as Orange Jessamine or Mock Orange, is a popular evergreen shrub or small tree native to South and Southeast Asia. Here is a description of this plant:
Appearance: Murraya paniculata is known for its dense, bushy growth habit. It typically reaches a height of 6 to 20 feet (2 to 6 meters) when fully mature, depending on its growing conditions and how it's pruned. The plant features dark green, glossy, pinnate leaves with 3-7 leaflets, which emit a pleasant fragrance when crushed.
Flowers: The plant is prized for its small, white, highly fragrant flowers. These flowers are star-shaped and are often compared to the scent of orange blossoms, hence the common name "Orange Jessamine." The blooms appear in clusters (panicles), giving rise to the species name "paniculata."
Fragrance: The fragrance of Murraya paniculata is one of its standout features. The sweet, citrus-like scent is reminiscent of orange blossoms, which is why it's often referred to as "Orange Jessamine."
Fruits: After flowering, this plant may produce small, red to orange, berry-like fruits. These fruits are not typically consumed and are primarily ornamental.
Usage: Murraya paniculata is a popular choice in landscaping and gardens due to its attractive appearance and delightful fragrance. It can be grown as a hedge, screen, or as a stand-alone specimen. It's also sometimes used in topiary and bonsai.
Growing Conditions: This plant prefers a warm and tropical to subtropical climate and thrives in well-draining soil. It requires regular watering and partial to full sun exposure for optimal growth. It's relatively low-maintenance and can be pruned to maintain its desired shape.
Toxicity: While Murraya paniculata is generally not considered highly toxic, all parts of the plant contain mildly toxic alkaloids. It's advisable to exercise caution when handling or consuming any part of the plant.
Overall, Murraya paniculata is a popular choice for gardeners and landscapers looking for an attractive, fragrant, and relatively easy-to-maintain plant. Its lovely white blossoms and citrus-like fragrance make it a prized addition to gardens in suitable climates.