Once established, a confederate jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) quickly and abundantly grows long clambering stems, eventually up to 40 feet in possible length. While not producing tendrils to clasp onto things, the flopping vine tips tend to randomly find nooks to grow through and help the entire plant climb upwards. On a vertical garden post, the plant may not so readily and convincingly climb up the smooth and narrow surface. A little manipulation of the stems, or training and tying onto the post, ensures the stems mature and stiffen to remain in an attractive whirl around the support. Grow confederate jasmine outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 8 through 10.
Wrap the loose vining stems of the confederate jasmine in a spiral around the post. Based on the stem configuration or angle of the main trunk, this spiral wrap can go either clockwise or counter-clockwise. Once wrapped, allow the plant to naturally fall or slide down the post to see how easily it will be to train the stems to continue to grow around the post.
Tie the wrapped vines of the confederate jasmine with jute string on the post. If a vine naturally grows upright and rests steadfast against the post without much manipulation, place a tie on it to begin training it against the post and provide some support and guidance for other stems on the plant. Tie the string tightly on the post so it’s snug and doesn’t slide, but don’t tie so tightly that it dents or constricts the plant stems.
Tap in some support guides on the post if you have trouble with your tied vines falling or sliding down the post. Hammer in 3-inch long nails at places where you want the spiraled stems to remain. Then manipulate the vines atop the nails, and tie them with jute string to the post. Wrap the jute string around the nail as you tie the vine — this will ensure the stem remains in a stationary spot.
Trim off vining side branches with a hand pruners in spring or summer. Once the confederate jasmine on the whole is trained around the post, snip off any branches that grow outward and away from the post and cannot be easily bent to train in a spiral around the post. White milky sap exudes from cut stems, so wash off the plant with a fine spray of water from the hose 10 minutes after you finish pruning.
If the garden post is made of metal and inserting nails isn’t an option, try purchasing a narrow trellis or other cross-hatch support to prop against the post. This will provide places for you to weave confederate jasmine branches through and around the post without the entire vine sliding or flopping off the post.
Never nail or staple a plant stem against a post. Eventually the stem or branch grows and increases its diameter. The nail or staple will inhibit stem growth and will bisect the stem, cutting off the flow of water and nutrients and killing the plant above this tourniquet.