in Tucson, Phoenix,
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Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, Arizona and California

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Bignonia capreolata: Crossvine

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Form: Climbing woody vine.
Lifespan: Perennial.
Leaf retention: Semi-evergreen with winter changeover.
Growth rate: Rapid.
Mature Size: 50' long.
Flowers: Large, bell-shaped, showy, unscented. 'Tangerine Beauty' is orange outside, yellow inside. Other colors, including yellow and red, are available.
Bloom: Late winter to late spring. May bloom sporadically summer to early fall. Climate dependant.
Fruit: Dark brown, woody, flat seedpods.
Leaves: Two compound leaflets, lance-shaped, smooth edges, glossy green, turning to dark red in winter.
Stems: Square cross-section with cross-shaped pith inside, reddish. No thorns. Slender tendrils at each leaf node assist climbing.
Roots: Forms underground tubers. Suckers from roots at base of plant. Highly invasive in moist, fertile soils.
Wildlife: Attracts hummingbirds, birds, butterflies and bees.
Toxic / Danger: Handling plant may cause skin dermatitis or allergic reaction in sensitive individuals.
Origin: Eastern United States south of the Great Lakes to Texas.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 5-9.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes, once established.
Sun: Full sun to open shade. Full sun produces the most flowers.
Water after becoming established: Once a month or more often depending on appearance.
Soil: Well drained, dry, tolerant of soil types, pH 6.1-7.8 (slightly acidic to slightly alkaline). Do not fertilize to avoid rampant growth.
Mulch: No.
First Year Care: Water frequently to establish until summer rains.
Planting: Can be grown in containers but will need more frequent watering.
Prune: After flowering, cut back to keep in bounds. Flowers on old wood, so do not prune in winter.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Seed and cuttings. Seeds have long germination time.
Uses: Ornamental, used on fences and trellises as a screen.

A member of the Bignonia family, related to Campsis Radicans: Trumpet Vine, and sometimes mistaken for it. 'Tangerine Beauty' is the most adaptable cultivar and somewhat less invasive. While this plant is usually described as having medium water needs, it will tolerate much less once established.

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Bignonia capreolata: Crossvine - flowers

Bignonia capreolata: Crossvine - leaves

Bignonia capreolata: Crossvine - seed pods