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CRYPTOSTEGIA grandiflora

Image of Cryptostegia grandiflora

Carol Cloud Bailey

Family

Asclepiadaceae

Botanical Name

CRYPTOSTEGIA grandiflora

Plant Common Name

Palay Rubber Vine

General Description

This glossy, succulent-looking vine was once grown for low quality rubber production but remains in gardens today as a tropical accent. It is native to tropical east Africa where the dry season is long and hot. Rubber vine is naturally drought resistant and offers an excellent choice for water conservation in frost-free, tropical climates. This is a twining vine that produces unique rope-like stems that are filled with white latex sap that can be bothersome to the skin. Leaves are large, oval and glossy, and account for some of this vine’s drought resistance.

Rubber vine blooms over much of the summer, producing large tubular flowers with a flared mouth similar to the trumpet vine. These showy blooms are lilac purple when they open but quickly fade to white as they mature. While this vine is a climber, it can also be cut back to promote more branching to yield a shrub-like shape. It is best to reserve this vine for locations where children and pets are not present.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    10 - 8

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    10 - 11

  • Sunset Zone

    23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Vine/Liana

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Width

    4'-6' / 1.2m - 1.8m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer

  • Native To

    Eastern Africa

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Tolerances

    Drought, Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Vining/Climbing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Summer

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Lavender

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Bark Color

    Slate Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Tropical, Vine

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No