"Y" is for Yellow Jessamine

Nov 21, 2017

Credit SC Public Radio

"Y" is for Yellow Jessamine. State flower. In 1924, the General Assembly chose the yellow, or Carolina, jessamine [Gelsemium sempervirens] as the state flower. Among the reasons sited were its being indigenous to every nook and corner of the state and that its perpetual return out of the dead of winter suggests the lesson of constancy in, loyalty to, and patriotism in the service of the State. Carolina jessamine is a twining woody vine with pointed, evergreen leaves. It climbs over bushes, fences, and tree limbs. Five-petaled, star-shaped flowers bloom from February or March to early May, and the capsule-like fruit matures from September to November. Yellow jessamine is common in the South Carolina Piedmont and Sandhills and in the coastal plain from Virginia to Florida as well as west to Texas and Arkansas.