Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Trumpet Creeper

Here are some shots of trumpet creeper, or Campsis radicans, growing on the fence at the Liz Christy Garden on Houston Street.

Campsis means 'curved' in Greek and refers to the curved stamens in the flower. Radicans means 'rooting' in Latin, referring to this vine's ability to develop roots along its stems and thus spread up trees, on buildings and along fences.

We've discussed relatives of this vine before, namely Jacaranda and Catalpa -- both members of the Bignoniaceae family.

Though it's timely I finally show photos of this lovely summer vine today -- lately I've been doing a fair amount of research on tropical plants, specifically those that thrive in Hawaii, and have been surprised by how many Bignoniaceae family plants feature in this environment. And it's true -- as I realize now -- that the majority of genera in this family are found in the tropics. Catalpa and Campsis are rarities in the family as they are found in such a temperate/cold climate.


Terri said...

Here, Campsis radicans is a holy terror. Along I-4, between I-75 and Plant City, south of the road there is a huge oak. During Campsis bloom season, the whole tree turns orange.

This vine is only "safe" where it's killed to the ground every year. Just saying. :-)

Bay Area Tendrils Garden Travel said...

I find this to be a wonderfully summery vignette! Yes, it's vigorous, but love the notion of it doing its thing on Houston Street in NYC! Alice