The Q&A Archives: Mandevilla Root Storage

Question: We recently purchased a Mandevilla vine, and I was wondering if the plant must be pot bound, or can i plant it in the ground and dig up the root system for next year?
Any advice would be greatlt appreciated.

Answer: This plant will not tolerate cold temperatures, so it will not overwinter outdoors in your area. Most gardeners grow it as a container plant so that it can be carried indoors each winter and returned outside in the spring. The moving process is done gradually so as not to shock the plant, and the plant must not be outdoors in temperatures lower than about 55 degrees or flowering will slow or stop. It does well in a very bright location indoors, or if you do not have a greenhouse or conservatory you can keep it in a bright but cooler location (50 to 55 degrees). In a cool spot it may defoliate and it will not need much water and will not need any fertilizer, but come spring it will still be alive with its root system intact. If grown in the ground, the plant would need to be uprooted, root pruned, potted, and then placed in a bright location indoors. A few gardeners have managed to dig and store the tuber, much as one would store dahlias, in a cool (45) and dry location packed in sawdust or sand or similar material. In spring after that treatment, however, the plant seems to take a long time to come into vigorous active growth. You might experiment and see what works for you.

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