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Tuesday - March 23, 2010

From: Fredericksburg, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Crossvine for metal barn in Fredericksburg, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have a backyard metal barn, the small storage-type structures that are common. Hail knocked some paint off the metal roof and rather than repaint it, we want to install some plastic webbing from the nursery and train a vine to cover the walls and roof. We'd like a native plant that thrives in full sun (one side of the barn gets southern exposure, the opposite side is in the shade but gets a little late afternoon sun. The roof, of course, gets full sun. We're thinking maybe crossvine is a good choice. Your opinion? Thanks!

ANSWER:

We think Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) is an excellent choice for your purposes. It can grow up to 50 ft. long, blooms red, yellow March to May, has low water needs, and will thrive in sun or part shade, so both sides of your barn will be fine. It probably will flower best in the sun, but the plant will still  grow well on the other side. The flowers attracts hummingbirds and butterflies and it is easy to propagate.

A far worse choice would be  Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper), a cousin to crossvine. It is extremely aggressive, especially in the South, and can damage wood, stone and brick. Plus, it is deciduous, so don't let anyone talk you into that as being "just as good."

Follow the plant link Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) to our Native Plant Database page on the plant for care and propagation instructions.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:

 

 

 

 

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