What Is Western Honeysuckle – How To Grow Orange Honeysuckle Vines

Orange Honeysuckle Vines
orange honeysuckle
(Image credit: shiyali)

Western honeysuckle vines (Lonicera ciliosa) are evergreen flowering vines that are also known as orange honeysuckle and trumpet honeysuckle. These honeysuckle vines climb up some 33 feet (10 m.) and decorate the garden with sweet smelling, orange blossoms. Read on for information about these vines including tips on how to grow orange honeysuckle.

What is Western Honeysuckle?

This North American native vine produces lovely, fragrant flowers. Bees and hummingbirds love western honeysuckle vines for the fragrant, trumpet-shaped blossoms that are rich in nectar. Kids also love to suck the sweet nectar from the base of a honeysuckle flower.

Gardeners, on the other hand, appreciate the way these vines twine their way up fences and trellises or ramble over trees. They provide year-round greenery as well as brilliant flowers in season.

Western honeysuckle vines bloom in late spring. The orange-red flowers hang in clusters at the tip of branches. True to their common name, the flowers look like narrow trumpets. These develop into orange-red fruit that wild birds appreciate.

How to Grow Orange Honeysuckle

If you want to start growing orange honeysuckles, select a site that gets some sun. Western honeysuckle vines do well in a sunny or partially sunny site. These vines grow best (and western honeysuckle care is easiest) in mild or cool regions. Plant them in USDA plant hardiness zones 4 through 8.

The native range of this variety extends from British Columbia south to California, and east to Montana and Utah. You’ll have a harder time growing these honeysuckles in hot areas where the soil is dry. You can start the vine by planting seeds or by propagating it from cuttings of mature wood. 

Western honeysuckle care is easiest if you plant the vine in moist soil. Don’t worry about perfect drainage with this variety, since it grows in clay as well as loam. Moderate drainage is sufficient.

Remember that this is a twining vine. That means that you should determine in advance where you want it to ramble and set up trellises or other structures. If you do not, it will twine up anything in its growing area.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.