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Cochliasanthus caracalla (Snail vine}

Last year I germinated some seeds purchased at Heligan. Described as a tender climber with fragrant flowers. They grew into rampant vines, in a very large ceramic container, in my conservatory. The flowers were a talking point for everyone who saw them and the perfume was wonderful. I wasn't sure if they would survive our winter but they have. There has been a lot of die back but new shots have now appeared. I have had to give the stems a clean as there were a lot of scale insects on them, hopefully it will grow on, as long as we do not have a late, big freeze. I saved seed from it, some I have given to friends to try and I am going to see if mine germinate as I am not sure if it is self fertile.
Isn't gardening exciting


  • Did you take any photos?

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • No, but if you type the name into Google it will bring up pics and plenty of cultivation, origins etc. info. Mine has lavender and white flowers. I would imagine in their native habitat they would be thought of as a pernicious weed. The shoots I spotted a couple of days ago are already double the length. I pinched out the growing tips on mine last year at about 7/8ft, on a metal frame I made up, but left a couple of stems to romp up into roof of the conservatory, in case it didn't like being cut back.
    When I repotted it into the large container I was expecting a ball of fibrous roots but the root system looks just like a clump of dahlia tubers which would explain why it is frost tender. We have had a very mild winter temp. wise so haven't had a problem with it. I have kept the soil in the pot damp, giving it a good soak every 3/4 weeks then letting it dry out which seems to work.It can be evergreen or deciduous, depending on climate so if you have a large heated greenhouse/conservatory where you could let it do its own thing it would be quite happy. Mine dropped its leaves and began dying back a bit, mainly to the tougher woody stems which keeps  its size down for me.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,014
    edited February 2020
    Yes all the pics online look gorgeous.  Shame we don’t have a place for one. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

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