NIGHT BLOOMING JASMINE
Our state capital and South Carolina's largest city, Columbia is the also home of the University of South Carolina (my husband's alma mater) and Columbia College (my alma mater in my hometown). The city's name comes from a poetic synonym for America, derived from the name of Christopher Columbus. Yellow Jasmine, the State Flower of South Carolina blooms prolifically in our capital city and its fragrance is unforgettable.
The Yellow Jessamine (or Jasmine) was officially adopted by the General Assembly on February 1, 1924, for the following reasons: it is indigenous to every nook and corner of the State; it is the first premonitor of coming Spring; its fragrance greets us first in the woodland and its delicate flower suggests the pureness of gold; its perpetual return out of the dead Winter suggests the lesson of constancy in, loyalty to and patriotism in the service of the State. "No flower that blooms holds such perfume, As kindness and sympathy won. Wherever there grows the sheltering pine Is clinging a Yellow Jessamine vine." From "Legend of the Yellow Jessamine," by Mrs. Teresa Strickland of Anderson, South Carolina, when the flower was made the emblem of Dixie Chapter, U.D.C., about 1906. The "Carolina or Yellow Jessamine" is defined by the New International Encyclopedia as "A climbing plant which grows upon trees and fences and bears a profusion of yellow, funnel-shaped flowers an inch in diameter, with a fragrance similar to that of the true Jasmine." Its odor on a damp evening or morning fills the atmosphere with a rare and delicate sweetness.