Several off-white flowers growing on dark green branches
Jasminum officinale

Common jasmine

Family: Oleaceae
Other common names: ياسمين شائع, ياسمين شامي, ياسمين صيفي (Arabic), jasmín pravý (Czech), jasmin officinal (French), Ίασμος ο φαρμακευτικός, Κοινό Γιασεμί (Greek), gelsomino commune (Italian), ソケイ(Japanese), Жасмин лекарственный (Russian), jazmín común, estrellita (Spanish)

Known all over the world for its fragrant scent, common jasmine has been cultivated for at least 2000 years.

Originating somewhere in Asia, jasmine was most likely one of the first plants to be cultivated specifically for its perfume.

The flower was popular in India, China and Persia (modern-day Iran), slowly becoming popular in Europe in the 15th and 16th century.

Today, jasmine is still a popular ingredient in perfumes, soaps and other cosmetics for its soothing and pleasing scent.

Jasmine is a member of the Oleaceae family, which also contains olive, ash and lilac.

Common jasmine is a climbing shrub that can grow up to 8 metres tall. The leaves are made up of 7 to 9 smaller ‘leaflets’, which are long, pointed and oval-shaped. The flowers are white or very pale pink, with five petals and strongly scented. The fruits are small black berries.

Read the scientific profile for common jasmine.

Beauty and cosmetics

Jasmine oil is commonly used in various scented products like soaps and perfumes due to its strong fragrant scent.


Jasmine is the national flower of Pakistan, and features on the state emblem.

Jasmine is used in aromatherapy, although there is limited clinical evidence to support its effectiveness.

  • Jasmine gets its genus name, Jasminum, from the Persian yasmin, which was the name of a perfume potentially made from the flower.

  • The species name, officinale, (meaning ‘of an officina’, the store room of a monastery), was used by Carl Linnaeus to describe species that had a known culinary or medicinal use.

A map of the world showing where jasmine is native and introduced to
Native: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China South-Central, East Himalaya, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, Tadzhikistan, Tibet, Turkey, West Himalaya
Introduced: Algeria, Bulgaria, Cuba, Dominican Republic, France, Great Britain, Haiti, Italy, Leeward Is., Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Venezuelan Antilles, Yugoslavia

Grows in a range of temperate habitats

Best time to see
Flowers: Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov
Fruits: Sep, Oct, Nov
Foliage: Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug

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The geographical areas mentioned on this page follow the World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions (WGSRPD) developed by Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG).