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Campsis radicans Trumpet Creeper, Trumpet Vine1

Edward F. Gilman 2


Trumpet vine climbs to 30 feet or more when given support (Fig. 1). The brilliant orange flowers are borne in summer and are often visited by hummingbirds. They will hang down from an arbor or trellis making a wonder "wall" or "ceiling" in a garden. Rapid growth makes training easy, but regular pinching and pruning is required to establish this vine on a structure. The invasive nature of the plant makes it hard to get rid of once it is established in the yard. Ants often live on trumpet vine and are sometimes found objectionable by gardeners. The thick, woody stem can grow between wooden house siding and destroy it. It is best suited for planting at the base of an arbor or trellis. It can also be used in a container where it will cascade over the side.

Figure 1. Trumpet creeper.
Figure 1.  Trumpet creeper.

General Information

Scientific name: Campsis radicans
Pronunciation: KAMP-sis RAD-ick-anz
Common name(s): trumpet creeper, trumpet vine
Family: Bignoniaceae
Plant type: vine
USDA hardiness zones: 4B through 10A (Fig. 2)
Planting month for zone 7: year round
Planting month for zone 8: year round
Planting month for zone 9: year round
Planting month for zone 10 and 11: year round
Origin: native to Florida
Uses: hanging basket; attracts hummingbirds
Availablity: somewhat available, may have to go out of the region to find the plant

Figure 2. Shaded area represents potential planting range.
Figure 2.  Shaded area represents potential planting range.


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


Leaf arrangement: opposite/subopposite
Leaf type: odd-pinnately compound
Leaf margin: dentate
Leaf shape: ovate
Leaf venation: pinnate
Leaf type and persistence: deciduous
Leaf blade length: 2 to 4 inches
Leaf color: green
Fall color: orange
Fall characteristic: not showy


Flower color: yellow
Flower characteristic: summer flowering


Fruit shape: pod or pod-like
Fruit length: 3 to 6 inches
Fruit cover: dry or hard
Fruit color: brown
Fruit characteristic: persists on the plant

Trunk and Branches

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


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


Roots: not applicable
Winter interest: no special winter interest
Outstanding plant: not particularly outstanding
Invasive potential: native plant that often reproduces into nearby landscapes
Pest resistance: no serious pests are normally seen on the plant

Use and Management

Like many vines, trumpet vine flowers best in a full sun location. It grows but flowers poorly in a shaded location. It will do fine in any soil except those kept continually wet and flooded.

There are several cultivars: 'Atropurpurea' - large, dark red flowers; 'Speciosa' - bushy growth habit; 'Flava' - yellow flowers; 'Praecox' - blooms earlier.

Planthoppers may occasionally feed on trumpet vine. The insects generally cause no serious damage so controls are not needed.

Pests and Diseases

Leaf spot caused by various fungi may be seen but are not serious.

Powdery mildew causes a white powdery growth on the leaves.


1. This document is FPS99, one of a series of the Environmental Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 1999. Reviewed February 2014. Visit the EDIS website at
2. Edward F. Gilman, professor, Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

Publication #FPS99

Date: 5/26/2015


      Organism ID


      • Gail Hansen de Chapman