American Native Trumpet Creeper is Campsis radicans, Bignonia radicans, Tecoma radicans

Campsis radicans can be invasive but it is a gorgeously flowering vine.

Native to most of the U.S. and parts of Canada, Trumpet Creeper can be a friend or foe depending on where it is planted.

If you need a vine to cover an ugly building or fence, this is a reliable grower that is far less invasive and problematic than Wisteria.

In a humorous column about Trumpet Creeper, retired horticulturist Gerald Klingaman says he has been afraid of vines since childhood.

"I’m afraid of vines. I like the idea of vines in the garden, the beauty of vines and the utility of vines, but they scare me. Whenever I hear a gardener ask how to care for wisteria, I shutter in apprehension of things to come, when the rampant vine will crawl through the window and strangle the hapless homeowners as they sleep."

Trumpet Creeper vines grow to 35-feet long and its roots go as deep as 20-feet. They colonize an area so be sure you put it someplace where its assertive habit of climbing over everything will be welcome. The suckering, layering growth habit make it terrific for erosion control but have also lead to it being called Hellvine and Devils Shoestring.

As you can see in the photos, the flowers are beautiful, waxy trumpets that are attractive to hummingbirds. When the flowers fade, they are replaced with 5-inch long pods.

Found frequently in the forests of the east and southeast, Trumpet Creeper climbs trees, using aerial rootlets, like English Ivy. Its roots can damage what it uses to hold onto, including brick, wood, stone, etc. Planting it near concrete, a driveway or a frequently mowed area will help control it.

Or, you can do what we did, and plant it in a huge pot

with a trellis installed.


Anonymous said…
Not Campsis radicans at all.
Bignonia capreolata.
Anonymous said…
Incidentally Campsis radicans has
Pinnately compound leaves not
pairs as your B. capreolata has.
Molly Day said…
Hello Anonymous!
I'm shocked that Grogg's Green Barn
sold us a mis-identified plant.
For some reason I had assumed that they knew their stock and that the tag on it was correct, too. But it must have been wrong.
Thanks so much for the corrections. Next time I'm there I'll ask about this error.
Come back and tell us more.

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