The Pink Trumpet Vine, Podranea ricasoliana, exuberantly blooms in fall with flared, trumpet-shaped flowers. If looking for seasonal color, be sure to add this one to your plant palette. Note – be sure to properly identify at the nursery as it can commonly be mistaken for Bower Vine or Pandorea jasminoides.
The lush green leaves and trumpet-shaped flowers of pink trumpet vine may look rather delicate, but this vine thrives in arid climates. Large pink flowers appear in spring and fall adding a welcome splash of color. While the onset of summer heat often stops blooming, the attractive foliage continues to add a visually cooling element to outdoor spaces. Freezing temperatures can cause frost damage in winter, but this vine recovers quickly in spring. Native to South Africa, the natural growth habit of pink trumpet vine resembles a sprawling shrub but is most frequently tied to a trellis to support upright growth against a wall.
Hardy to 10 degrees F., pink trumpet vine can reach 20 feet tall and wide but can be maintained at a smaller size. In more humid climates, such as the Southeastern U.S., the growth rate of this lush green vine can be rather uncontrolled. However, in arid climates, it is recommended for drought tolerant gardens where its rate of growth is controlled. Maintenance requirements include pruning it back in late winter by at least half its size, removing all frost-damaged growth. Light pruning can be done anytime in the summer through September.
Pink trumpet vine is best used to provide a lush green screen against a block wall, on a patio pillar, alongside a pool, or use it to fill a bare corner. Train it onto a sturdy trellis to promote upright growth, or skip the trellis and allow it to grow as a large, sprawling shrub. When deciding where to plant this South African native, select a location that receives full sun or bright, filtered shade. Avoid planting against a wall that receives hot western sun as it will suffer from the intense, reflected heat. Before planting, amend the soil by adding 1 part compost to 1 part native soil. Most importantly, give it at least a 10-foot space in which to grow where you will enjoy its beautiful floral show.
Did you know that up to 70 percent of water use is outdoors? That’s why we love desert plants and feature them each month. It’s still a great time to start planning for fall planting in your landscape, and you can learn more about Podranea and many other plants by visiting our Arizona Low-Water-Use Plants page. Visit our page on Choosing and Planting Low Water-Use Plants for tips on plant selection and how to plant properly.
Also, be sure to read through all of our featured Plant of the Month blogs!
From time to time, Water – Use It Wisely features guest bloggers who write about topics related to water and water conservation. Noelle Johnson is an urban horticulturist, Certified Arborist and freelance garden-writer who helps people create beautiful, low-maintenance gardens through helpful advice on her blog www.azplantlady.com. She is passionate about teaching people about the amazing desert plants that thrive in our landscapes.