Landscape Spotlight: Mandevilla

Posted May 26, 2016 in Blog, Plant and Tree

When considering what plants to add to our landscapes, we have a tendency to flock to perennials because they come back year after year, growing our investment.  However, there is still a lot to be said for annuals.  Annual plants and flowers add amazing pops of color to the landscape, and you can customize the look of your landscape year after year by trying new combinations!  One annual that loves to soak up the sun as well as the limelight is the mandevilla vine.

mandevilla whiteThe mandevilla is a bold and showy addition for a dramatic statement in your landscape or container garden.  This Brazilian tropical vine is a surefire favorite for its intense colors and its nonstop flowering throughout the summer, and into the fall season.  You can find this trumpet-shaped flower in several different shades of pink, red and white. Because it blooms so profusely in the warmer months, it is the perfect selection for areas around pools, decks and patios, especially climbing up a trellis, fence or mailbox post for added elegance on your property.

Plant this beauty where you would like to see an additional burst of color, but be sure that the area where it is planted gets full indirect sun and has well-drained but moist soil.  Being a tropical vine, this plant cannot tolerate cold temperatures or frost, so around our area in northeast Pennsylvania, it is considered to be an attractive annual.  But if you consider your thumb to be green, you can transplant it into a container and bring it indoors, treating it as a houseplant once the temperatures dip below 50 degrees.

When overwintering a mandevilla, it will thrive best when placed in a sunroom or by a warm sunny window.  mandevilla containerThis plant actually grows best in large containers, so it will grow exponentially when you transplant it into a larger container as necessary.  To prevent detrimental root rot, be sure to use containers that have drainage holes that would prevent the roots from sitting in water.  Growing mandevilla indoors is more work than treating it as an annual outside in the warmer months, but spending the extra time to tend to the plant in the winter will provide you with several months of bright flowers, just when you need it most when it is cold and dreary outside.

To keep this plant looking healthy and tidy, here are a few helpful notes:

  • This plant responds well to light pruning, so if it is getting a little wild, a quick trim won’t hurt
  • Being an excellent pick for busy or forgetful families, its drought tolerance will forgive you for a forgotten watering from time to time.
  • Using a general fertilizer during the spring and summer months will guarantee this vine’s generous full bloom.
  • Pinching back the tips of the new shoots will result in bushier growth and more abundant flowers.
  • *One special mention, this vine is can be considered an irritant to humans and animals.  Be careful when pruning, pinching the stems or transplanting because it will secrete a milky white sap, which can cause itching and a rash for some.  Even though the level of toxicity is considered low, if you have a furry family member that likes to nibble, consider putting this plant where it is not easily accessible.

You will find that whether you treat this vine as an annual outside during the summer, or trying your hand at winter care, its beauty is well worth the effort of care.

Would you like to know more about tropical annuals or what plants and flowers work best in your landscape?  MasterPLAN Landscape Design has extensive experience, knowledge and background in everything outdoors from plants and flowers to backyard solutions and transformations.  It is our mission to not only provide beautiful outdoor living spaces, but to educate our clients about long-term landscape solutions along the way.  Reach out to MasterPLAN when you are ready to explore the full potential for your own property!

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