I wonder if the Isley Brothers found the inspiration for their classic 70s hit “Summer breeze, makes me feel fine, blowing through the jasmine in my mind” after a visit to the eastern Costa del Sol on a warm, summer Mediterranean evening?
If they did, then the heady fragrance of the flowers of the Dama de Noche (otherwise known as the night-scented jasmine, lady of the night or, to use the Latin name – cestrum nocturnum) was surely the catalyst.
By day, the Dama de Noche masquerades as an upright, fairly ordinary looking shrub with dark green leaves and large clusters of small, lime green buds, with no perfume.
As dusk falls, however, the buds open into white, star-shaped tubular flowers and their bewitching, intense scent is wafted around on the breeze and can often be detected for hundreds of metres around.
Every evening at this time of year, I throw all the windows open in the house to allow the perfume to waft inside.
Such a wonderful summer memory!
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