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Publication #FPS-43

Antigonon leptopus Coral Vine, Queen's Wreath1

Edward F. Gilman2

Introduction

This rapidly growing, tender vine is perfect for use in hot,sunny areas where its light green, heart-shaped, four-inch leaves and beautiful, drooping clusters of bright pink blooms offer a welcome relief (Fig. 1). Coral vine will offer a colorful display all summer and into the fall until nipped by frost. Climbing by means of tendrils, it will quickly cover trellises, arbors, and fences or will spread up a tree trunk and into the branches. If left alone, coral vine could completely cover the tree. Its deciduous nature (in USDA hardiness zone 9) makes it well-suited for arbors where it can offer dense shade and flowers in the summer and yet allow the warm winter sun through when it is most needed. Be prepared to control or direct the growth of this rapidly spreading vine so it will not “take over” your garden or landscape.

Figure 1. 

Coral vine.


[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]

General Information

Scientific name: Antigonon leptopus
Pronunciation: an-TIG-o-non lep-TOE-pus
Common name(s): coralvine, queen’s wreath
Family: Polygonaceae
Plant type: vine
USDA hardiness zones: 9 through 11 (Fig. 2)
Planting month for zone 9: year round
Planting month for zone 10 and 11: year round
Origin: not native to North America
Uses: cascading down a wall
Availability: grown in small quantities by a small number of nurseries
Figure 2. 

Shaded area represents potential planting range.


[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]

Description

Height: depends upon supporting structure
Spread: depends upon supporting structure
Plant habit: spreading
Plant density: dense
Growth rate: fast
Texture: medium

Foliage

Leaf arrangement: opposite/subopposite
Leaf type: simple
Leaf margin: undulate
Leaf shape: ovate
Leaf venation: pinnate
Leaf type and persistence: deciduous
Leaf blade length: 2 to 4 inches
Leaf color: green
Fall color: no fall color change
Fall characteristic: not showy

Flower

Flower color: white; red
Flower characteristic: summer flowering; pleasant fragrance; fall flowering; spring flowering

Fruit

Fruit shape: irregular
Fruit length: less than .5 inch
Fruit cover: dry or hard
Fruit color: unknown
Fruit characteristic: inconspicuous and not showy

Trunk and Branches

Trunk/bark/branches: typically multi-trunked or clumping stems
Current year stem/twig color: reddish
Current year stem/twig thickness: thin

Culture

Light requirement: plant grows in part shade/part sun
Soil tolerances: occasionally wet; slightly alkaline; clay; sand; acidic; loam
Drought tolerance: high
Soil salt tolerances: poor
Plant spacing: 36 to 60 inches

Other

Roots: not applicable
Winter interest: no special winter interest
Outstanding plant: not particularly outstanding
Invasive potential: potentially invasive
Pest resistance: long-term health usually not affected by pests

Use and Management

Coral vine shows best growth and heaviest flowering in full sun. Tolerant of many soil types, it responds well to ample moisture conditions, especially during drought. Knocked to the ground by frost in all areas, except USDA hardiness zone 10, coral vine will quickly renew itself in spring. Old vines can be severely cut back during the late winter.
There is a cultivar available with white flowers 'Album', but it is not as cold hardy as the pink varieties. 'Baja Red' is a hot rose pink, nearly red, cultivar but its color is variable from seed.
Propagation is by seed, usually from the bountiful volunteer seedlings which appear under the old vines.

Pests and Diseases

No pests or diseases are of major concern. Caterpillars will occasionally chew holes in the leaves.

Footnotes

1.

This document is FPS-43, one of a series of the Environmental Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 1999. Reviewed February 2014. Visit the EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

2.

Edward F. Gilman, professor, Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.


The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. For more information on obtaining other UF/IFAS Extension publications, contact your county's UF/IFAS Extension office.

U.S. Department of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.