Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Rankin's Jessamine, Swamp Jessamine, Rankin's Trumpetflower
Gelsemium rankinii

Family: Gelsemiaceae
Genus: Gelsemium (jel-SEM-ee-um) (Info)
Species: rankinii

3 vendors have this plant for sale.

View this plant in a garden

Vines and Climbers

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Other details:
Flowers are fragrant
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

Click thumbnail
to view:

By ptyler
Thumbnail #1 of Gelsemium rankinii by ptyler


1 positive
2 neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral zkmayo On Mar 22, 2012, zkmayo from Matthews, NC wrote:

Ive had this plant for two years now. Ive been trying to cover a simple arbor with it. Its grown a couple feet, but not a great deal. It flowers well, but no fragrance. I may put it in a container on my deck and replace the arbor planting with a Carolina Jasmine.

Neutral roughbeast On Apr 1, 2011, roughbeast from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

We just planted this in a large pot with a trellis, and it's doing fine. We're in Los Angeles, also known as a desert, so we'll have to water it. I have two concerns: the salesperson at the large garden chain that sold me this plant called it Carolina Jasmine, but the tag (which I didn't look at) says it's Swamp Jessamine Gelsemium rankinii. When I looked up the Latin name I found that Carolina Jasmine is species sempervirens, not rankinii. Sempervirens has a strong aroma; rankinii does not. The tag also doesn't reveal how toxic Gelsemiums are - alkaloids related to strychnine that can kill honeybees as well as people if eaten.

Positive CptnRn On Mar 24, 2011, CptnRn from Austin, TX wrote:

This is a beautiful hardy plant. I have planted 6 of these vines in two different yards, only one died where it was in bad soil that I had failed to correct in any way. The other two that I planted last spring survived the record high temperatures, the winter drought and record freezing temperatures. Stayed green and had some flowers all winter, by early March they were covered with hundreds of yellow blossoms and are still blooming. They expanded from a small half gallon pot to cover an 8' wide swath of fence, and one has climbed over 12' high where some of it was able to reach a few branches on a crape myrtle tree. I like this vine a lot because it does not damage the fence or house siding the way ivy and wysteria do.

Negative soulbloom On Aug 18, 2006, soulbloom from Richmond, VA wrote:

I would like to give this vine a positive review but truth be told, I've had it for over a year and it has had no progress. Still the same size as when I bought it. Whenever it shows some sign of taking off, it dies back to its regular size. I think its the spot I have it in. Its full sun but the soil probably isn't greatest quality.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Niceville, Florida
Albany, Georgia
Clarkston, Georgia
Marietta, Georgia
Omega, Georgia
Ray City, Georgia
Amite, Louisiana
Independence, Louisiana
Durham, North Carolina
Matthews, North Carolina
Rocky Mount, North Carolina
Austin, Texas

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