En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - June 09, 2010

From: Hugo , MN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Pruning, Transplants, Vines
Title: Care for large trumpet vine in Hugo MN
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I was recently given a large Trumpet vine that has been growing in the same place for the last 25 years.I have replanted it and given it a large trellis to grow on.I live in central Minnesota. My question is should I cut it back now or just allow it to grow the first year to establish itself. The main stem is about 6 inches around and only has 2 small buds coming on it. The top (about 10 feet high ) has lots of new buds on it. This is my first trumpet vine and I am at a loss .

ANSWER:

We are also at a loss about two things: How on earth did you transplant a vine that size? and (2) What is it doing growing in Minnesota?

The first question has to do with the fact that a plant growing that long in one place must have had one heck of a root. If it is still growing and putting on buds after that kind of move, we have to tip our hat to whoever did it. The second question is that both of the native plant candidates  to be a "trumpet vine," Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) and Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper) are hardy from USDA Hardiness Zones of 6 to 9 or 6 to 10. Hugo, in Washington Co., MN, is in Zone 3b, where annual average minimum temperatures are -35 to -30 deg. The closest that crossvine grows to Minnesota is the very southern edge of Ohio. The nearest the trumpet creeper comes are counties in the very southern corners of Wisconsin and Ohio. 

However, whether it lives through the Winter or not, we think the best possibility is that you have Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper). Probably, that far North its invasive tendencies are not going to have a chance to get going before it starts freezing back. Both vines are considered native to the southeastern United States, and both can become somwhat invasive, climbing up trees or buildings and putting out suckers all over everywhere. While trumpet creeper is beautiful and a prolific bloomer attracting hummingbirds, it can be a pest in the fields and has a sap that can irritate the skin. It is sometimes referred to as "cow itch" or "Hellvine," if that gives you a clue. 

Either plant is going to bloom better if it can get up to the sun, which may be why you have buds up high, but none down low. If the buds are breaking up high, the roots are alive. We would do no trimming unless and until it did start to get invasive, and then only to control its spread beyond where you want it and nipping off suckers if they appear. We would suggest that as soon as the blooms and leaves start to drop that you trim it down fairly close to the root area, and then cover that with mulch. If the roots freeze, the plant is dead, regardless of what it went through to get transplanted.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Bignonia capreolata

Bignonia capreolata

Campsis radicans

Campsis radicans

 

 

 

More Pruning Questions

Trimming of Escarpment Oak from Austin
May 18, 2014 - We have a 2-year-old quercus fusiformis in our front yard and have been advised by some people that we need to remove the bottom branches and trim the ends of the branches that are hanging far down. ...
view the full question and answer

Late winter pruning of native Texas Sage
January 27, 2005 - I have several Texas Sage bushes that have started to get very woody and have growth only on the top. This seems to have led to a definite listing to one side. Should I trim these to the ground or...
view the full question and answer

Trimmng and fertilizing yucca
September 07, 2007 - Should I cut the stalks of the Yucca that have already bloomed or wait until they dry? How often should I fertilize?
view the full question and answer

Care of Northern honeysuckle bush
April 26, 2009 - I have a honeysuckle bush, I have had it for about year to two years. I would like to know if I should cut the brown parts off. There are some vines that do not look good, but some of the branches ha...
view the full question and answer

Hail damage to Cenizo in Austin
August 03, 2009 - We have some Texas sage Silverado. After the latest hail, they look very sad. If about the half of plant is OK and the other half looks dried/dead?, should we prune the dried half? Are they ever comin...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center