Do Jasmine Attract Bees and Butterflies? (ANSWERED + Care Tips)

The lure of jasmine is so enchanting when it wafts in a summer evening breeze. You can’t help but stop in your tracks, looking around for the source of that decadent smell. But does the smell and look of jasmine have the same effect on insects, as it does on humans? Does jasmine attract bees and butterflies too?

Yes – jasmine does attract bees and other fauna, like butterflies, to your garden. If you are a keen gardener, then this is good news. Because bees are one of the main custodians responsible for pollinating the plants in our gardens. Without bees, it would be disastrous – and to be honest, we don’t particularly want to think about it. If, on the other hand, you are allergic to bees, then you should probably avoid planting jasmine in your garden. We’ll look at why insects are important to jasmine and how they relate to each other.

Does Jasmine Attract Bees and Butterflies

Welcome to the Garden Bench Top – where we are going to explore the interaction between jasmine and insects. We’ll discuss the benefits of bees, and why it is a great idea to plant jasmine in your garden.

So grab your beekeeping suit, because we’re about to get up close and personal with some interesting insects.

A Brief Look at Jasmine Flowers

As we vividly described in our introduction, jasmine is responsible for that intoxicating smell that fills a garden during the warmer months of the year.

They are classified as shrubs and vines in the olive family (Oleaceae genus). Around our area, we are more familiar with the vine variety of star jasmine, where they are a popular plant to train along fence lines and walls. Like this awesome confederate jasmine diamond pattern pictured below.

jasmine vine trailed on fence

Not only does it look spectacular, but the jasmine flowers explode with a flurry of blooms that release a smell that fills the streets with that all too familiar sweet honey scent. It almost makes you want to go over to the neighbors’ fences and eat all the jasmine up.

Fun Fact: did you know there is a variety of jasmine that is edible! Click the link to read up on the variety of jasmine you can enjoy as a tea.

But we digress – let’s circle back to the topic at hand – does jasmine attract bees and butterflies?

Do Bees and Butterflies Like Jasmine? The Answer!

jasmine flower

As we established earlier, bees and butterflies do like jasmine flowers.

It is likely the stark bright white of the jasmine flowers that attract the bees. Bees and butterflies have excellent color vision, and can distinguish ultraviolet color patterns displayed by flowers to attract insects. Unfortunately, humans cannot see these ultraviolet colors, otherwise we probably wouldn’t be able to take our eyes off of flowers.

Flowers also release their intoxicating smells to attract bees and other insects. In fact, jasmine flowers coordinate their smell and look to attract particular types of insects, such as bees and butterflies. Nature truly is a wonderful and mysterious force.

Bee Activity Habits

Given that plants and flowers operate according to the sun cycle, and most flowers open during the day. Check out this quick YouTube video by Science ABC that explains how flowers track the sun’s movement across the sky during the day.

Armed with this knowledge, it makes sense that the majority of bee activity is also during the day. They will busily buzz around your garden, reading the signals from the flowers that are in bloom, and happily collect the pollen from one jasmine flower, and then the next. Finally returning to their hive once they have reached their quota.

Fun Fact

Bees will perform a bee waggle dance to help point their fellow worker bee friends in the direction of good sources of pollen and nectar.

Check out this quick video of a bee waggling away

Butterfly Activity Habits

Like bees, butterflies are not active at night, but not for the same reasons.

In fact, butterflies are cold-blooded, which means they rely on external sources for warmth. They will choose to rest up and sleep at night, rather than fly around in the darkness, at the mercy of other nocturnal creatures that will happily make a meal out of them, like bats, possums and owls.

Does Night Blooming Jasmine Attract Bees and Butterflies?

There is a variety of jasmine flowers that actually bloom at night, called the night blooming jasmine (go figure!).

Unfortunately, this variety of jasmine doesn’t attract insects because, as we stated earlier, most of the pollinating fauna is primarily active during the day. Once nightfall begins to set in, they will retire back to their hive to rest up and prepare for another day of foraging and pollen and nectar collecting.

What are the Benefits of Jasmine for Bees?

jasmine flower wall

The reason why jasmine plants and flowers go to such lengths to attract bees and butterflies is because of the direct benefits they deliver to the plant.

Essentially, bees help plants reproduce via pollination. Jasmine plants rely on bees to distribute their pollen to other flowers and jasmine plants, ensuring that their lineage survives and produces new offspring.

Actually, the relationship between bees and jasmine flowers is almost symbiotic. While bees help ensure the jasmine genus continues to exist, the jasmine flowers also provide the bees with valuable food that they can feed to their queen back in the hive. This also ensures the next generation of bees will have food to grow into new worker bees.

Do All Types of Jasmine Attract Honey Bees and Butterflies?

Pink Jasmine

Probably one of the more attractive varieties of jasmine, pink jasmine (or Jasminum polyanthum) is less common than other varieties. But it has the same attractive properties that will attract insect fauna to your garden like bees and butterlies. Their sweet jasmine fragrance and beautiful colors will act as a beacon for bees and butterflies to come and frequent their flowers.

Star / Confederate Jasmine:

One of the most common varieties of jasmine in household gardens, the star jasmine and confederate jasmine will most definitely attract a host of local fauna to your garden. They are a popular variety of flowers to draw in beneficial insects into your garden.

We do recommend planting them away from your vegetable patch, as they can sometimes be too attractive. By attracting butterflies, it also invites them to lay eggs on your vegetable plants, which results in a caterpillar infestation, which can have devastating consequences.

Arabian Jasmine

Arabian Jasmine (also known as Jasmine Sambac) is actually the edible jasmine that we mentioned earlier in this piece. With its beautiful white flowers, the Arabian Jasmine is a very attractive option for bees and butterflies to use as a source of pollen and nectar. It also produces a sweet scent that will not only impress your senses, but also the smell of local fauna.

White Chinese Jasmine

Like the other members of the jasmine family, White Chinese Jasmine will also attract the likes of bees and butterflies. It possesses the right components of attractive flowers with fragrant scents.

What is special about chinese star jasmine is how prolific their blooms are. When allowed to grow en masse, white chinese jasmine can release large amounts of flowers that can feed an entire bee hive.

Final Thoughts on Does Jasmine Attract Bees and Butterflies

Jasmine can be the star of a garden (pun intended)! It is a beautiful plant that produces a beautiful fragrant flower.

Not only do we find jasmine alluring, but so do bees and butterflies. They are attracted to the beauty of the flowers as well as the intoxicating scent.

Jasmine and bees and butterflies have a somewhat symbiotic relationship. The jasmine’s pollen is spread from flower to flower, plant to plant when the bees and butterflies visit each flower. And the insects use the flowers for food and nutrients.

All in all, growing jasmine in your garden can only be a good thing, so go grab some today and begin your jasmine journey.