Friday, 3 May 2013

MELBOURNE STREET TREES 37 - LADY OF THE NIGHT

Cestrum nocturnum is a species of Cestrum in the plant family Solanaceae (the potato family). The species is native to the West Indies and South Asia. Common names include Raatraani, night-blooming cestrum, Hasna Hena, lady of the night, queen of the night, night-blooming jessamine and night-blooming jasmine. The plant was discovered by Ragbhir Singh Ubhi, in the late 1800s on a hike through a West-Indies Forest, as he noticed the sweet aroma of the plant.

C. nocturnum is grown in subtropical regions as an ornamental plant for its flowers that are heavily perfumed at night. The plant produces black berries full of seeds.  It grows best in average to moist soil that is light and sandy, with a neutral pH of 6.6 to 7.5, and is hardy to hardiness zone 8. C. nocturnum can be fertilised biweekly with a weak dilution of seaweed and fish emulsion fertiliser.

It has become widely naturalised in tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world, including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, southern China and the southernmost United States, and is difficult to eradicate. It is classed as a weed in some countries.In Auckland New Zealand, it has been reported as a seriously invasive weed to the Auckland Regional Council and is under investigation. It has been reported that the plant has been removed from some old people's homes due to the strong scent causing difficulties for the residents. There are mixed reports regarding the toxicity of foliage and fruit, but like many members of the family Solanaceae, it may contain varying amounts of the toxic solanine.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.






4 comments:

  1. The berries are almost as pretty as the flowers.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Look! how the berries stand out of those pretty yellow flowers!

    The sound of Hibiscus

    ReplyDelete

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