The Q&A Archives: Trumpet Creeper

Question: I recently bought two of your trumpet creepers and planted them on either side an arbor. (The arbor has an established row of indian hawthornes on either side of it.) After planting the trumpet creepers, it seems everyone I know started to warn me about the agressive growth of this plant and how they will take over (kill) my indian hawthornes. My friends seem to be talking about the trumpet vine, are your trumpet creepers similar in nature? If so, where would be a good place to plant these plants?

Answer: Trumpet vine or trumpet creeper (Campsis radicans) is a large vine and can exceed 20 feet of growth in one season once it is established, mature size will reach 35 to 40 feet. It requires a sturdy support. It can potentially smother neighboring plants if allowed to become too heavy and thick where it scrambles over them. In my experience, it is best grown on a post in the center of a lawn area, trimmed back very hard early each spring, and then allowed to form a sort of umbrella shaped whorl. Alternatively it can be allowed to cover a building such as an ugly garage. It blooms on the new growth of the season, so it is best trimmed in late winter; pruning during the summer will remove flowering wood. Having siad all that, the blooms are gorgeous and a well grown plant in full bloom is a sight to behold.

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