The Tabernaemontana divaricata is a genus of medium-sized evergreen shrub, native to tropical Asia; it has a roundish habit and easily reaches 2-3 meters in height; the foliage is dark green, oval or lanceolate, quite thick and rigid; during spring and summer it produces small flowers with five petals, white, slightly fleshy, which give off a pleasant fragrance and bloom at the apex of the branches. The shrub develops quite quickly, producing numerous disordered branches, which produce a very dense and thick crown. Plant suitable for growing in pots, but also for creating shielding hedges. The variety 'Flore Pleno' has flowers with double corolla, very showy.
Tabernaemontana divaricata plants are grown in a sunny or partially shady place; these plants can withstand short periods of not too intense frost, in regions with very cold winters it is advisable to grow them in pots, so that they can be sheltered in a cold greenhouse in winter. The plant needs a few hours of direct light to grow at its best. If it is grown in the open ground and rigid temperatures are expected, then it is advisable to repair it with the special sheets available on the market and by placing at the base of the mulching material or dry leaves, which allow to protect the root system from the action of frost.
Tabernaemontana divaricata plants are quite resistant and can easily withstand periods of prolonged drought, so much so that they are generally satisfied with the rains. If the period of drought lasts for a long time it is advisable to intervene by supplying water, with the foresight to wait for the soil to dry between one watering and another, since the onset of water stagnation can cause suffering to the plant and can lead to radical rot, which would compromise its health.
If the plant is grown in pots, it is necessary to supply more water.
The Tabernaemontana divaricata are grown in a good soft and deep soil, rich in organic matter, very well drained.
These plants are rustic and resistant and adapt without problems to any soil, even compact and poor, as long as the drainage is good; in fact a dangerous problem for the plant is represented by the formation of stagnations, which cause the yellowing of the leaves and, indeed, the plant could rot.
During flowering it is good to periodically provide a slow release granular fertilizer for flowering plants, in order to provide the right nourishment to this type of shrub.
The multiplication of Tabernaemontana divaricata plants occurs by seed, in spring, or by semi-woody cutting in late spring, placing the cuttings in a soft soil rich in organic matter, so as to allow the development of new shoots.
Tabernaemontana divaricata: Pests and diseases
The plants of this variety fear the attack of aphids and cochineal. For this reason it is advisable to intervene before flowering with broad spectrum products, which will effectively counteract the onset of problems. It is also good to check the formation of water stagnations that could lead to the development of fungal diseases dangerous for the health of the shrubs.