Takes some years before its growth takes off. Crossvine is likely to remain full and leafy even as the maturing vine shades its lower portions.

Coverage, then, could be indefinite. In this regard, crossvine is like Hydrangea macrophylla: The relatively early-in-the-season flowers form only on woody growth that has survived the Winter. It is an amazingly adaptable plant, tolerating both dry conditions and even some standing water. its fast growth: Where growth isn't killed back by severe Winter weather, crossvine is renowned for its ability to cover even large structures.

If I were gardening in the bosom of Zone 7, I'd grow 'Dragon Lady' up the trunk of my pollard of black-leaved catalpa. Provided crossvine is able to grow vigorously (see "Culture" and the "How to handle it" boxes, below), growth is dense and strikingly more "veneering" of host structures than its hardier cousin, trumpet vine. To increase top-growth viability, plant where the vine can adhere to a building that is heated; there is some heat loss through building walls, which is to the vine's advantage. This juniper is full to the ground, and the crossvine is planted near its base, so that the vine's stems are sheltered almost at their point of origin. Even in sheltered circumstances—see the second "How to handle it" box, below—my 'Dragon Lady' here in southern New England seems unlikely to explore higher than eight to ten feet.

One convenient choice would be to let crossvine clothe the trunk of a shrub or tree you grew as a standard.

All the usual assists in maximizing hardiness need to be employed: Plant in a site that ensures the greatest exposure to sun, which will increase the plant's overall vigor as well as maximizing its ability to harden new growth in time for Winter. Happily, my oh-so-practical combination of growing 'Dragon Lady' up through the dense and columnar 'Gold Cone' juniper is aesthetic, too. Avoid those that are also in flower in Spring: No show could compete with that of the crossvine. Or there could be a pairing with "regular" trumpet vine, Campsis radicans. Regardless, I have failed several times in establishing 'Dragon Lady' in other spots in my own garden, even those that were sheltered and provided good drainage. The juniper's tight upright form is maintained by an annual spiral of twine applied each Fall. Flowers of 'Atrosanguinea' are brick red, and seem similar to those of 'Dragon Lady'. Then, pruning needed to maintain the host plant's overall shape would also keep the crossvine in bounds.

its tolerance of exposures and soils: Crossvine thrives in both sun and shade, but flowers best in full sun. These are buds with firepower. © 2020 LouisLovesGardening, Ltd. All rights reserved. In early spring, it produces clusters of showy orange-red, sometimes yellow, trumpet-shaped flowers against a background of four- to six-inch-long glossy leaves. Mulch the base of the plant heavily in late Fall, and don't rush to scuffle back the mulch in early Spring, when hard frosts and surprise snow can still occur. They are ... read more, This summer many beginning gardeners probably tried ... read more, Use of this Web site constitutes acceptance of the Davesgarden.com.

But in Spring?

its early season of flowering: Campsis flowers at the tips of new stems, which need some time to mature sufficiently to initiate bud formation.

Dragon Lady Cross Vine is a multi-stemmed evergreen woody vine with a twining and trailing habit of growth.

Over two inches long, they have a torpedo-like thrust that demands attention. Several forms of Bignonia capreolata are established at Chanticleer, the astounding estate garden in nearby Wayne, PA. On my next visit, I must inquire how they are doing.

Our 'Dragon Lady' Trumpet Creeper, or Crossvine, or Bignonia is a cultivar of Bignonia capreolata. Vigor and coverage are much greater where the vine is reliably stem-hardy: in the warmer reaches of Zones 7 through 9. Plant in a site that is notably well-drained in the Winter, even if this means that you need to provide supplemental water in the Summer. 'Dragon Lady' is reported to be somewhat hardier than either the species or these other cultivars. Early next Spring, pruning away last year's Campsis laterals clears the stage for the mid-Spring floral display of the Bignonia. , would be a terrific companion to one side or the other. They would project outward through the, growth, and dangle their sensational flowers in July and August.

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