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This rare and elegant jasmine was discovered recently in Pakistan. It makes a free-standing shrub that bears lovely yellow, scented flowers from mid-late summer.

Jasminum leptophyllum

[KSP]

Kew Species Profiles

General Description
On one of Kew's collecting trips to Pakistan, 100 plants of the rare Jasminum leptophyllum were discovered. No other populations are known to local expedition members.

This rare and elegant jasmine was discovered recently in Pakistan. It makes a free-standing shrub that bears lovely yellow, scented flowers from mid-late summer.

Species Profile
Geography and distribution

Restricted to the Palas Valley of northern Pakistan, not far from the capital Islamabad, at the western extreme of the Himalaya at 1,500-2,000 m.

From the wild to the garden

Jasminum leptophyllum was recently discovered in a small area of northern Pakistan, the Palas Valley, by a Pakistani botanist, Rubina Rafiq.

In 1995 a team from Kew visited the valley to collect seed, which was germinated successfully at Kew. As part of the agreement with the Pakistani authorities it was agreed that the plants would only be distributed to certain authorised botanic gardens, in accordance with the international Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

This species is therefore not available commercially at present. However, it can be admired growing happily at Kew, Wakehurst and the Sir Harold Hillier Gardens and Arboretum in Hampshire, and so far it seems to have adapted well to the English climate and can withstand a few degrees of frost.

Description

Jasminum leptophyllum is a much-branched shrub, 1 m high, with dark grey branches. It has narrow evergreen or semi-evergreen dark green leaves, 3 cm long.

The flowers, which appear in mid-late summer, are bright yellow, about 2 cm long, and scented.

The fruit is a black berry.

Threats and conservation

Although Jasminum leptophyllum is not listed on the IUCN Red List, it is potentially at risk due to its small population size. There have been proposals to flood the Palas Valley for a hydro-electric scheme, which would destroy its entire known habitat.

Uses

People living in the Palas Valley of Pakistan burn the leaves of Jasminum leptophyllum to repel fleas. However, members of the Kew expedition to Pakistan did not find this practice to deter the voracious fleas at all!

Jasminum leptophyllum is cultivated as an ornamental at Kew, Wakehurst and the Sir Harold Hillier Gardens and Arboretum in Hampshire and has the potential to be more widely grown.

Millennium Seed Bank: Seed storage

The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership aims to save plant life worldwide, focusing on plants under threat and those of most use in the future. Seeds are dried, packaged and stored at a sub-zero temperature in Kew's seed bank vault at Wakehurst.

Number of seed collections stored in the Millennium Seed Bank: One

Germination testing: 75% germination was achieved on a 1% agar medium, at a temperature of 20°C, on a cycle of 8 hours daylight/16 hours darkness.

Cultivation

Jasminum leptophyllum is propagated from seed or cuttings.

This species at Kew

There is a specimen of Jasminum leptophyllum growing just inside Elizabeth Gate at Kew, and others in the Rock Garden and against various warm walls in the garden. It can also be seen at Wakehurst.

Pressed and dried specimens of Jasminum leptophyllum are held in Kew's Herbarium, where they are available to researchers from around the world, by appointment. 

Ecology
In dry crevices in metamorphic rock.
Conservation
Not evaluated according to IUCN Red List criteria.
Hazards

None known.

[KSP]
Use
Ornamental.

Native to:

Pakistan

Chrysojasminum leptophyllum (Rafiq) Banfi appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Rafiq, r. [14091], Pakistan Jasminum leptophyllum K000901334 isotype

First published in Atti Soc. Ital. Sci. Nat. Mus. Civico Storia Nat. Milano 1(1): 5 (2014)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R., Nic Lughadha, E., Black, N., Turner, R. & Paton, A. (2021). The World Checklist of Vascular Plants, a continuously updated resource for exploring global plant diversity. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-021-00997-6 Scientific Data 8: 215.

Literature

Kew Species Profiles

  • Green, P. & Miller, D. (2009). The Genus Jasminum in Cultivation. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Rafiq, R. A. (1996). Three new species from Palas Valley, District Kohistan, North West Frontier Province, Pakistan. Novon 6(3): 295-297.
  • Sinnott, M., Rafiq, R. & Green, P. (2000). Jasminum leptophyllum (Oleaceae). Curtis’s Bot. Mag. 17(1): 29-34.
  • The Plant List (2010). Jasminum leptophyllum.
  • World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (2010). Jasminum leptophyllum. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Kew Backbone Distributions

  • Green, P. & Miller, D. (2009). The genus Jasminum in cultivation: 1-150. Kew Publishing, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

Kew Species Profiles
Kew Species Profiles
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0