Plant Common Name
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Producing hundreds of creamy white to beige flowers in the warm months, lady-of-the-night's floral fragrance is among the most delicious evening scents of the tropics. A slow growing, tall evergreen shrub, it is native to the eastern islands of the West Indies.
The glossy green to dark green leaves cover the brown branches of this upright large shrub, which can attain a somewhat spreading canopy with great time. Blooming anytime when warm, but mainly when nighttime temperatures are comfortably cool (not in the heart of the tropical summer), hundreds of long-necked trumpets are held out from twig tips. First a clear, crisp white or ivory in color, the blossoms fade to creamy light yellow and then beige. Their fragrance is apparent by late afternoon, but is intense at dusk and into the overnight hours when it would be naturally pollinated by moths or bats. The rounded fruits are small and orange.
Grow lady-of-the-night in a fertile, well-draining soil that has organic matter incorporated, ideally acidic to slightly alkaline in pH. In hot locations shade in the midday is recommended but overall plant in full to partial sun situtions. It is a lovely small shrub for a foundation bed or mixed tropical border or container. With much time it reaches a small tree-like habit.
Brunfelsia americana looks and smells very similar to Brunfelsia nitida, the latter primarily flowering when both day and evening temperatures are warm, usually summertime.
AHS Heat Zone
12 - 9
USDA Hardiness Zone
10 - 15
H1, H2, 22, 23, 24
Full Sun, Partial Sun
12'-20' / 3.7m - 6.1m
6'-10' / 1.8m - 3.0m
Early Spring, Spring, Late Spring, Fall, Late Fall, Early Winter