By Nikki Phipps
(Author of The Bulb-o-licious Garden)
Trumpet vine (Campsis radicans), also known as trumpet creeper, is a fast-growing perennial vine. Growing trumpet vine creepers is really easy and although some gardeners consider the plant invasive, with adequate care and pruning, trumpet vines can be kept under control. Keep reading to learn more about how to grow trumpet vine.
Trumpet Vine Plant
The trumpet vine flower is great for attracting hummingbirds to the landscape. The beautiful tubular flowers range in color from yellow to orange or red. Blooming on the trumpet vine plant takes place throughout summer and into fall, though blooming may be limited for those planted in shady locations. Following its flowering, trumpet vines produce attractive bean-like seedpods.
Trumpet vine plant is hardy in zones 4-9. The woody vines are usually strong enough to endure winter while other growth will generally die back, returning again in spring. Since these vines can reach 30-40 feet in just one season, keeping their size under control with pruning is often necessary. If allowed to grow, trumpet creeper can easily take over and is extremely difficult to get rid of.
How to Grow Trumpet Vine
This easily grown vine thrives in both sun and partial shade. While it prefers a nice well-draining soil, trumpet vine flower is resilient enough to adapt to nearly any soil and will grow readily. Be sure to choose a suitable location prior to planting as well as a sturdy support structure.
Planting too close to the home or outbuilding could result in damage from the vine’s creeping roots so it’s important that you plant the vine some distance from the home. They can work their way under shingles and even cause damage to foundations.
A trellis, fence, or large pole works well as a support structure when growing trumpet vines. However, do not allow the vine to climb trees as this can lead to strangulation.
When growing trumpet vines, containment is another consideration. Some people find it useful to plant trumpet creeper in large bottomless containers, such as 5-gallon buckets, which can be sunk into the ground. This helps keep the vine’s spreading habit under control. If the vine is located in a large enough area where its suckers can be routinely mown and pruned, it can be grown without support and treat more like a shrub.
Care of Trumpet Vines
Trumpet vine requires little care once established. Trumpet creeper is a vigorous grower. Water only as needed and do not fertilize.
About the only maintenance you’ll need to perform is pruning. Trumpet vine requires regular pruning to keep it under control. Pruning takes place in early spring or fall. Generally, spring is preferable and may be severely pruned back to just a few buds.
Deadheading trumpet vine flower pods as they appear is another good idea. This will help prevent the plant from reseeding in other areas of the landscape.