Home & Garden Gardening

Mandevilla: Fast-Growing Tropical Flowering Vine

Native to tropical America, mandevilla vines are known botanically as Diplandenia splendens.
They are fast-growing, twining vines that bloom prolifically when in active growth.
They are ideal to plant near a decorative garden obelisk, trellis or arbor, where they will climb and scent the air with their prolific flowers.
They have large, dark green, glossy leaves and clusters of trumpet-shaped flowers in shades of red, pink, purple, or white.
Extremely prolific, mandevillas can grow 10 feet or more during a single growing season.
Mature specimens often reach heights of 30 feet or more, although these specimens are grown either in the tropics or in a greenhouse in temperate zones.
Most often sold as container plants in areas outside of the tropics, mandevillas can be grown during the summer months either in a container or planted in the ground.
If temperatures fall below 50 degrees F.
during the winter months in your locale, bring your mandevilla indoors for the winter months.
For the frost-free growing season, choose a spot outdoors that gets full sun, but is protected from the hot midday or late afternoon sun.
This is especially important if you are planting it near a walkway or patio; although mandevilla like the heat, it benefits from a little protection from the hottest sun of the day.
Keep your mandevilla well-watered.
Do not let the pot dry out, but do not allow it to sit in the excess water that drains out of the bottom of the pot - they don't like we feet.
If planted in the ground, ensure the planting site gets good drainage.
Feed them every other week with a water soluble fertilizer watered into the roots, and mixed at half the strength recommended by the fertilizer manufacturer.
To bring mandevilla indoors for winter, dig and pot up mandevillas growing in the ground before temperatures drop to average highs of 60 degrees F.
Allow it to harden off a little bit by watering it a little less for a week or two.
Cut it back to about 10 inches high.
Spray the remaining stub with a strong spray from the hose, to dislodge any pests crawling on it.
Thoroughly water the container until the soil is completely saturated.
This will help wash away any soil-borne critters.
Move the pot to a dark, cool, frost-free area, such as a basement, crawlspace, or unheated hall closet.
The ideal temperature to keep it at over winter is between 55 and 60 degrees F.
Check it every week to 10 days.
Keep the soil on the dry side, but do not allow it to dry out completely.
Do not fertilize until after repotting the following spring.
When shoots begin to form and grow the following spring, move it to a sunny spot indoors, such as a south-facing window without a curtain.
Pinch the side shoots occasionally and it will grow into a bushier vine and produce more flowers.
For specimens that grow in containers all the time, repot them in mid to late May, before bringing it outdoors for the summer.
Begin fertilizing again when you repot it, watering then soil with the fertilizer mixed with water.
Move your mandevilla outdoors after all danger of frost has passed and average daytime temperatures are warmer than 60 degrees F.
Whether you grow your mandevilla along a fence or climbing a decorative garden accent like an obelisks, trellis or arbor, it will bloom prolifically and grace your garden with a riot of flowers all summer long.

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