Colorful climber

IMG_5543This Thunbergia alata, commonly known as Black-eyed Susan vine, was a gift, way back in May, from a gardening friend. There are two colors planted in the container, which occupies a sunny corner of my deck. I tied string from the plant stakes in the pot to the downspout so it would have something to climb.

IMG_5538And climb it did. Right up to the wires. This vine does not need to be fertilized, but when it gets this big, it requires copious daily watering because the soil in the container can no longer hold sufficient moisture to support all that foliage. Apparently it also likes to be grown in moist soil when planted in the ground.


I like the darker blooms on the second vine. The hummingbirds enjoyed this column of flowers all summer, too.


This plant is native to Madagascar, Africa and Asia, so it’s perennial in Zone 10 or warmer, which Rhode Island is most definitely not. It will be tossed when its season ends, after adding considerable color and interest to the deck for several months.


About dirtynailz

Writer for a daily newspaper, gardener, tree hugger, orchid-grower, photographer, animal lover, hiker, wilderness seeker. Proponent of clover in the lawn and a dog on the bed.
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5 Responses to Colorful climber

  1. GardenPest says:

    Lovely display and minimal energy and effort to set up your “trellis”, Daily watering would be a joy – to be surrounded by these blooms, which support our hummers. Thanks for sharing.


  2. Herb Doc says:

    What a coincidence that you posted this one! I almost since you a post on mine which I purchased in the spring. Since I had grown them once or twice before and could never find stakes that were tall enough to accommodate them, I put the pot on my second floor deck that has a shepard’s hook attached to the end post. They have grown nearly to the top of the hook now, and are almost touching the bird feeder than hangs from the hook! Amazing plant, but you’re right in saying it requires water everyday, especially in the miserable heat we had a couple of weeks ago.


  3. Herb Doc says:

    Mine does too; it should last right up until frost. Sorry for that garbled second sentence…I don’t know where it came from!


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