These Mexican natives are spectacular vines for milder climates, reaching heights of 2030 ft. Glossy leaves consist of two leaflets with a central, three-part tendril that plants use for climbing. All bear long-lasting, trumpet-shaped flowers. Plant in good, well-drained soil; provide sturdy support, since growth is dense and heavy. Prune in winter to thin stems, control size. Not browsed by deer.
D. buccinatoria (Bignonia cherere, Phaedranthus buccinatorius). BLOOD-RED TRUMPET VINE. Zones CS, TS; USDA 9-11. Oblong to oval leaflets 24 in. long. Clusters of 4-in.-long, yellow-throated flowers in orange-red fading to bluish red; blossoms stand out well from vine. Blooms in bursts throughout year when weather warms. Give protected site in hottest climates.
D. laxiflora (D. lactiflora, D. cinerea). VANILLA TRUMPET VINE. Zones TS; USDA 10-11. More restrained than most trumpet vines and requires less pruning. Oblong, 2-in.-long leaflets. Vanilla-scented, 3-in.-long trumpets appear in generous clusters throughout warmer months, sometimes giving 8months of bloom; they are violet at first, fading to lavender and white.
D. 'Rivers'. ROYAL TRUMPET VINE. Zones TS; USDA 10-11. Plants sold under this name are nearly a match for D. buccinatoria in vigor and foliage and have flowers of about the same size; blossoms are mauve to purple with a yellow-to-orange throat. Sometimes labeled D. riversii.