What would you have done differently

greenelbows1(z9--so LA)September 30, 2004

if you'd had better information? My example: I planted Thunbergia grandiflora (sky flower) having read it would grow 10-15 feet tall. I had read if you wanted to grow vines put up a telephone pole, and when I had to take out a diseased tree I had the tree guy take out the top and the branches and leave a 'telephone pole' for me to grow a vine on, and planted this really lovely thunbergia. Well--I guess if I butchered it regularly, like every month, I could keep it below 15 feet, but I don't, and it has overgrown the 'pole', which rotted out long ago but is completely surrounded by vine, and it has mostly taken over a 25 year old chinese pistache I adore and a very large loquat of about the same age. On the other hand, if I had read the very reliable garden book that tells me it is only hardy to 60F I probably wouldn't have planted it and would miss the beauty of what I call my personal kudzu. Guess it's a good thing it gets knocked back by the cold or you wouldn't be able to find me. I'd still plant it I think, but somewhere else. What would you like to warn others about?

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live_oak_lady(Zone 9)

I wouldn't have planted so much of the lovely, chartreuse sweet potato vine that lights up the darkness at night. If left to its own wiles it can take over a town. I now make sure that all my friends get regular cuttings of it as that is the own way to keep it in check.
I love the Thunbergia flowers--there is no true blue like that.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2004 at 4:41PM
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bigeasyjock(z8Ms)

I've always wanted the Thunbergia but now I wonder ;>
My horror vine is wisteria. I let a patch of it grow wild for a few years (in the coutry while I was stuck here in the city with zero time to get up to the coutry ... work!!!). Man did the stuff run! And it rooted every few feet too. A major mess! I'm just now getting it under control after mowing it all down over winter and hitting it with roundup every month this summer. I still have rooted runners hiding within the wildflowers but I'll get them too! I will! ;>
Mike

    Bookmark   October 23, 2004 at 4:57PM
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bigeasyjock(z8Ms)

I've always wanted the Thunbergia but now I wonder ;>
My vine horror is wisteria. I let a patch of it grow wild for a few years (in the coutry while I was stuck here in the city with zero time to get up to the coutry ... work!!!). Man did the stuff run! And it rooted every few feet too. A major mess! I'm just now getting it under control after mowwing it all down over winter and hitting it with roundup every month this summer. I still have rooted runners hiding within the wildflowers but I'll get them too! I will! ;>
Mike

    Bookmark   October 23, 2004 at 5:00PM
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greenelbows1(z9--so LA)

I don't think the Thungergia is NEARLY as bad as wisteria, it just grows a whole lot bigger than the books and stuff I'd read indicated and I wish I'd known so I could have planted it in a better location. Don't think there are any runners anywhere, tho' it's wider at the base than it was, but I'd think that was reasonable after ten years or so. Others have taken it out because it starts blooming late and gets frosted, but in a mild winter I think it would bloom all winter long. (It may have, but I don't remember for sure.) But it is so beautiful, and full of bloom right now and has been blooming for months, just not so heavily. My neighbors have wisteria so I have to fight it all the time. Don't suppose I'll ever get rid of it, and like you say, Mike, it really takes over. It's lovely in bloom, but it's a much shorter bloom season.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2004 at 11:03PM
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Pterostyrax(8a)

If left to its own wiles it can take over a town. I now make sure that all my friends get regular cuttings of it as that is the own way to keep it in check.

LOL!

    Bookmark   October 26, 2004 at 7:26AM
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live_oak_lady(Zone 9)

If only I knew how to post a photo on the forum I would show you how it has taken over the town. The original plant, "the mother" of them all, sits in a five gallon pot and it takes two people to carry it. The potato must weigh 40 pounds by itself. I wonder if any of that is edible or useful for something else besides being such a "light up the night" color. I must look that up.
Our Thunbergia is so beautiful right now. Of course it is still 90 degrees in the last week of October. Should be thankful that we are enjoying our blooms so long.
Anyone want some potato vine cuttings?

    Bookmark   October 27, 2004 at 11:56AM
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Django(z9 LA)

I'll take some potato vine if you take some root beer plant (I think it is piper auretum). I could control it for two years. Without a freeze last winter it has run wild.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2004 at 10:33AM
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