On a recent tour of my garden, the coral vine was in full bloom, and it stole the show. This stunning late-summer bloomer stops people in mid-sentence to ask, “What is that?” and “Where can I get it?” Learn how to grow coral vine, and decide if it’s right to add to your yard and garden.
The pink flower clusters with curling tendrils of coral vine are also impressive in floral arrangements. Coral vine is a crowd and bee-pleaser for sure.
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3 Tips For How To Grow Coral Vine
1. Before planting, learn if coral vine is considered an invasive species where you live.
Coral vine (Antigonon leptopus) is also aptly called Queen’s Wreath, Mexican Creeper, and Chain of Love. It is a fast-growing tropical vine with showy pink and white flowers that grows in USDA zones 9-11.
This Mexican native plant is considered invasive in certain parts of the world, including some south-eastern areas of the United States such as Florida. However, in dry, desert regions of the U.S., like Arizona, it is a rapid grower but not considered invasive.
This website has information to help you determine if coral vine is considered invasive in your area. If it is invasive where you live, do not plant it.
What is an invasive species?
An invasive species is “an alien species whose introduction does or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health” as per Executive Order 13112: Section1. Definitions.
2. Understand how coral vine grows.
Coral vine is grown from seed or transplant. Transplants are usually the best option.
- In some areas, underground tubers develop as the plant grows and spreads the vine to other areas.
- Coral vine also readily self-seeds as small seeds drop from within the dried flower petals.
- The thornless vines with deep green heart-shaped leaves and tendrils will readily climb a trellis or any available area.
- Coral vine begins to bloom in August, with peak blooms in October until frost.
- The showy pink flowers attract bees, and hundreds of bees are often along the vine in full bloom.
- Frost kills the vines, but underground tubers send out new shoots the following spring. Cut back the vines to nearly ground level once the danger of frost is passed in the spring.
3. Care for coral vine correctly.
- Plant coral vine transplants (preferred) or seeds after the danger of frost has passed.
- Choose a location to plant coral vine that you want to shade in the summer but have sun in the winter, as the vine will die back and be dormant in the coldest months of the year. (see photos below)
- Give coral vine plenty of room to spread; the vine is vigorous and does well on an arbor or large trellis.
- Coral vine tolerates most soils and does not need fertilizer or overly-rich soil.
- Water coral vine frequently when first planted. Once established, coral vine is drought tolerant and only needs water weekly during summer or dry spells.
- Coral vine thrives in full sun (even Arizona’s full sun) and heat; it will tolerate partial shade.
- Trim vines back as needed throughout the growing season.
- Prune back and remove all browned vines after frost. Vines can also be left to overwinter and pruned back in the spring. Mulch to protect tubers from freezing temperatures.
- Vines will rapidly regrow in the spring.
Coral vine season by season
Pollinators love coral vine
Are you looking for more information about how to grow vines?
This is just one of 10 vines that grow well from seed. Learn more about my other favorites in this blog post.
This Arizona Vine Planting Guide shares some of my favorite vines that grow well in Arizona and gives growing and planting details for each one.
Want to add more color to your garden with flowers?
Flowers to Plant Outside & Seeds to Start Indoors Each Month in the Low Desert of Arizona.
• PLANTING GUIDE: Each month lists annual flowers and bulbs to plant outside & seeds to start indoors.
• BLOOMING GUIDE: Photos show what may be in bloom that month.
Want more information about gardening in Arizona? This blog post shares 7 tips for how to grow a vegetable garden in Arizona.