Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - March 09, 2016

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Vine to attract Butterflies and Hummingbirds in Austin
Answered by: Mike Tomme

QUESTION:

We'd like suggestions for a climbing, flowering, butterfly/hummingbird friendly plant for our Austin, TX backyard!!

ANSWER:

You've left out some critical information in your question. How much sun will it get? What kind of soil will it be growing in? What kind of structure will it be growing on?

I recommernd you go to wildflower.org, click on Native Plants and then Native Plant Database. On that page you can enter in your specific sun and soil conditions and the color and time for you would like it to bloom. Also specify that you are looking for a perennial vine. 

A search like this may return over a hundred plants. Many of these will not be readily available in local nurseries so you can eliminate them. Others, including popular vines like Campsis radicans (Trumpet creeper) and Bignonia capreolata (Crossvine) can be quite destructive to wooden structures and will be best grown on a masonary or metal support structure.

Now, having said all that. the abscence of crucial information won't keep Mr. Smarty Plants from having an opinion. My choice would be Lonicera sempervirens (Coral honeysuckle). Attracts hummingbirds and butterflies and has a long bloom period.

 

From the Image Gallery


Coral honeysuckle
Lonicera sempervirens

Coral honeysuckle
Lonicera sempervirens

More Vines Questions

Plants that smell like chocolate from Coral Gables FL
July 12, 2012 - I am looking for plants that smell like chocolate. I live in south Florida. We are currently growing and testing Berlandiera lyrata. Do you know of other plants whose flowers smell like chocolate?
view the full question and answer

Transplanting Virginia creeper
September 02, 2008 - I have a large Virginia creeper plant approximately 15 feet in length. Is it possible to transplant the whole thing without killing it? If so how do I care for it after it has been moved? Thank yo...
view the full question and answer

Wisteria and Non-Poisonous Native Vines
February 15, 2012 - I'm from central Texas and I'm wanting to plant a native vine that will work well around the public, mainly kids. It's a mostly sunny trellis that makes an arch. I'd like to plant the native Wiste...
view the full question and answer

Germination of Purple Clematis from Junction TX
October 31, 2013 - I have some Purple Leather Vine seeds I want to share and want help learning to germinate. Can anyone there help me find interested recipients?
view the full question and answer

Identification of vine in Pennsylvania
June 11, 2012 - I have several vine plants growing in my deck planters from last season. The leaves are 9 pointed, it looks more like 7, but there are 2 little points at the very bottom of the larger leaves. When t...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.