How to propagate trumpet vine?

Tips For Propagating Trumpet Vine Plants

Whether you’re already growing trumpet vine in the garden or you’re thinking about starting trumpet vines for the first time, knowing how to propagate these plants certainly helps. Propagating trumpet vine is actually pretty easy and can be done in a number of ways — seed, cuttings, layering, and division of its roots or suckers.

While all of these methods are easy enough, it’s important that everyone be aware that these plants are poisonous and not just when ingested. Contact with its foliage and other plant parts, especially during propagation or pruning, can result in skin irritation and inflammation (such as redness, burning, and itching) in overly sensitive individuals.

How to Propagate Trumpet Vine from Seed

Trumpet vine will readily self-seed, but you can also collect and plant the seeds in the garden yourself. You can collect seeds once they mature, usually when the seedpods begin to turn brown and split open.

You can then either plant them in pots or directly in the garden (about ¼ to ½ inch deep) in fall, allowing the seeds to overwinter and sprout in spring, or you can store the seeds until spring and sow them at that time.

How to Grow Trumpet Vine from a Cutting or Layering

Cuttings can be taken in summer. Remove the bottom set of leaves and stick them in well-draining potting soil. If desired, you can dip the cut ends in rooting hormone first. Water thoroughly and place in a shady location. Cuttings should root within about a month or so, give or take, at which time you can transplant them or let them continue growing until the following spring and then replant elsewhere.

Layering can also be done. Simply nick a long piece of stem with a knife and then bend it down to the ground, burying the wounded portion of the stem. Secure this in place with wire or a stone. Within about a month or two, new roots should form; however, it’s better to allow the stem to remain intact until spring and then remove it from the mother plant. You can then transplant your trumpet vine in its new location.

Propagating Trumpet Vine Roots or Suckers

Trumpet vine can be propagated by digging up the roots (suckers or shoots) as well and then replanting these in containers or other areas of the garden. This is normally done in late winter or early spring. Pieces of root should be about 3 to 4 inches long. Plant them just beneath the soil and keep them moist. Within a few weeks or a month, new growth should begin to develop.

How to Grow Trumpet Vines From Cuttings

Colorful hummingbird magnets, trumpet vines (Campsis radicans) bloom from spring to fall in orange, red or yellow. Propagate more of them from a friend’s or neighbor’s vine, or from your own, for more of these showy perennials. Take the cuttings in early summer and the new vines should be ready to plant in the garden by fall.

Choose Wisely

Trumpet vines or trumpet creeper plants can grow to 40 feet and are considered invasive in some areas. Trumpet vines can quickly overtake an area and these adaptable plants grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 to 10. For fewer problems, choose smaller cultivars like ‘Apricot’ (Campsis radicans ‘Apricot’), which grows in USDA zones 4 to 9, to only 12 to 15 feet tall. Prune the vines regularly to keep them in check.

Prepare Ahead of Time

Water the vine generously the day before taking the cuttings so there will be plenty of moisture in the stems and leaves. Take the cuttings in the morning before they lose moisture during the heat of the day.

Have your pot filled before you take the cutting. Use coarse builder’s sand as the rooting medium and a choose a plant pot that is at least 3 to 4 inches deep. Choose a pot that has drain holes in the bottom. Rinse the sand thoroughly with clear water to remove dust and debris. Pour the wet sand into the container. The container must be large enough to allow for 5 inches of space for each cutting. Use several smaller containers or one larger one for multiple cuttings.

Make planting holes in the moist sand for the trumpet vine cuttings with a pencil. Each hole should be 1 inch deep, 2 1/2 inches away from the edge of the container and 5 inches apart.

Take and Process Cuttings

Stand the pruners, with the blades open, in a jar or large glass with enough household disinfectant in it to cover the blades and sterilize them. Let them soak for two to five minutes. Rinse the disinfectant off with clear water and dry them before using them. This helps prevent diseases on the cuttings, which can cause them to fail.

Cut 4- to 6-inch-long pieces of stem from the trumpet vine, making the cut just below a set of leaves. Each cutting should have three or four sets of leaves. Wrap the cuttings in moist paper towel and put the towel a plastic bag as soon as you take them. This helps prevent moisture loss.

Snip off the leaves on the lower one-half to two-thirds of each cutting and cut the remaining leaves back to a length of 2 inches. Remove any flowers and flower buds.

Pour rooting hormone into a small container or onto a piece of paper. Dip the bottom end of each cutting in rooting hormone and stick it in a planting hole. Firm the sand around the base of the cutting.

Mist the cuttings with a gentle mist from a spray bottle. The water should be room temperature. Slide the entire container into a clear plastic bag and seal it shut. Set the cuttings in a bright room where temperatures remain between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not set them in direct sunlight.

Mist the cuttings each morning and water them if the sand begins to dry. Check for roots after a few weeks. To do this, tug gently on each cutting. You will feel resistance when they have formed roots.

Leave the plastic bag open and stop misting after the trumpet vine cuttings form roots to reduce the humidity level. Continue to keep the sand moist. Remove the plastic bag after a few days.

Plant the trumpet vine cuttings in individual containers one week after they develop roots. Use houseplant potting soil and make sure the container has drainage holes. Continue to keep them in bright, indirect light and water them when the top of the potting soil begins to dry.

Place the plants outside for a few hours each day in a shady spot that is protected from drying wind for two to three days. Start this hardening off process two months before the ground normally freezes in the fall. Allow the top 1 to 2 inches of potting soil to dry before watering.

Place the plants in direct morning sunlight for an hour, increasing the length of time by 30 minutes each day. After two weeks they should be used to four to six hours of direct sunlight and ready to be planted in the garden.

A trumpet vine in bloom.


I have some pods growing on my trumpet vine and would like to know if I can store them for the winter and grow them in the spring. I would like to give my daughter a start somehow.

A: Let the seeds brown and dry right on the vine. That way you know they’re fully mature.

Before the pods open and drop seed, harvest some seeds and store in a sealed plastic bag for the winter. This simulates winter dormancy. Come spring, you can either start some of the seeds inside in a seed-starting mix or plant them directly in the ground outside next May. Some sources suggest aiding germination by nicking or sand-papering the seed coats before planting.
You could then give your daughter a pot or two of indoor-started potted vines for planting in May or dig up and transplant an outdoor-started vine at your daughter’s place next fall.

Keep in mind that these are big (30 feet and up without pruning) and amazingly fast-growing vines. They also can seed around themselves. So you might find some volunteers that you can just dig up from around your plant to give to your daughter. Some people consider trumpet vines (Campsis radicans) to beyond vigorous and into invasive.

How to Propagate Trumpet Vine From Cuttings

A simple guide is given for rooting or how to propagate orange trumpet vine from cuttings. You can even grow an orange trumpet vine in containers.
I have been admiring beautiful exotic dense flowers of trumpet vine or creeper growing wildly on fences, walls, carport or buildings since last 2 decades. Every time I saw it, I wanted to have it in my garden. I tried several times to start it from cuttings, but did not succeed.

Orange trumpet vine in neighbourhood

But now after mastering the art of plant propagation, I have succeeded in starting orange vine by cuttings. I am growing trumpet vine in a container.
The trumpet vine is suitable for warm climates. You can propagate trumpet vine cuttings, semi-hardwood cuttings during summer.

The propagation of trumpet vine is similar to propagating blueberries, propagating bougainvillea, hydrangea propagation, growing jasmine from cuttings and growing rubber tree plant from cuttings.
I was just walking on a road near my house, I saw the orange vine on the fence of a house, I took the cutting of a stem that was firm and woody, but still flexible enough to bend – it looked like semi-hardwood.

Propagation Steps of Orange Trumpet Vine

Based on my experiences (Container gardening), below are the instructions to grow orange trumpet vine by stem cutting.
Important: Start propagating the orange vine in early morning or evening. You can put 3-4 cuttings in a pot to root them.
Take a small pot, 3-4 inch and fill it with a well-drained, loose potting mixture such as a mixture of fine potting mix and washed coarse river sand. Water well and leave the pot for some time to drain excess water.

Planted Trumpet Cutting

Rooted Trumpet vine

  1. Cut the stem just below a node with a sharp knife and remove the foliage from the bottom one-third of the vine stem.
  2. Scrap the bottom of the stem a bit and dip it in rooting hormone powder. Shake the stem to remove excess powder. You can use natural rooting hormone.
  3. Using a stick make a hole at the centre of the pot and carefully insert the trumpet vine stem into the soil so that at least 2 nodes are in the soil and the foliage of the cutting is above the soil. Cover the hole with soil.
  4. Put the pot with a clear polythene bag and close with a tie at the top and place it in shade but bright and wind protected place.
  5. Each week open the bag and watch for any growth. You may damp the soil a little bit after 2 weeks.
  6. Within 4-5 weeks, new growth will emerge. Take out the pot and let it remain in indirect sunlight for another 2-3 weeks or until 2 sets of leaves appear. Do not over-water the pot, but keep the soil moist. You may see roots coming out of the holes at the bottom of the pot.
  7. Carefully transplant the new plant into another pot or ground. Put the pot in a sunny location.

The trumpet vine can also be started by seed, layering method and division of its roots.

Video of how to propagate trumpet vine from cuttings

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Thursday – August 19, 2010

From: Dallas, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Propagation of trumpet vines from Dallas
Answered by: Barbara Medford


Can you tell me about trumpet vines, can they be rooted in water? I heard they reseed at the end of their growing season.


Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper) grows natively in the Dallas area, so they should do well where you are. We don’t know if it can be rooted in water, but we do know it propagates itself to the point of madness. If you tried rooting it in water, it might take over your kitchen. Before you make any decisions about using this plant, we suggest you read this Dave’s Garden Forum on Campsis radicans, especially the negative comments.

From our own Native Plant Database page on this plant, here are some more warnings:

“Native to eastern North America as far north as New York and Ontario, this vine is often cultivated for its attractive, reddish orange flowers and can escape cultivation, sometimes colonizing so densely it seems a nuisance, particularly in the southeast, where its invasive qualities have earned it the names Hellvine and Devils Shoestring. Its rapid colonization by suckers and layering makes it useful for erosion control, however, and its magnificent flowers never fail to attract Ruby-throated Hummingbirds within its range. Adapted to eastern forests, Trumpet creeper grows tall with support. It climbs by means of aerial rootlets, which, like English Ivy, can damage wood, stone, and brick. To keep it in check, plant it near concrete or an area that you can mow; mowing down the suckers will discourage them. Fairly drought tolerant within its range. Blooms most in full sun.”

As an alternative, might we suggest Bignonia capreolata (crossvine)? It is more of an East Texas plant, but it grows in your area. The vines are related in that both belong to the Bignoniaceae Family, but while Crossvine also can grow rather vigorously, it is a little more controllable that the trumpet vine. Here are its propagation instructions:

“Propagation Material: Seeds , Softwood Cuttings , Root Cuttings
Seed Collection: Collect the large, woody capsules from late summer through fall when they are light brown and beginning to dry. Seeds remain viable one year in sealed, refrigerated containers.
Seed Treatment: Seed requires no pretreatment.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: Training to avoid crowding of stems will aid in the formation of flower shoots. Branches can be cut back in the spring to encourage flowering.”

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:

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Increase Bloom on Trumpet Vines

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Trumpet vines are a favorite plant for attracting hummingbirds to the garden. But lots of leaves and no flowers are a common problem for gardeners. Don’t give up; you can get this vine blooming for you and the hummingbirds to enjoy.

Be patient. Trumpet vines need to reach maturity to flower. This can take up to five or seven years.

Make sure the plant receives plenty of sunlight. Move plants to a full sun location if needed.

Avoid high nitrogen fertilizers near the plant. These encourage leaf and stem growth and discourage flowers. Instead consider using a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer on this and all your plantings. It’s a good choice for all your plants’ needs.

And only use a blossom booster if your soil test indicates you need more phosphorous. Most garden soils are high to excessive in phosphorous and adding more can interfere with the uptake of other nutrients.

A bit more information: Trumpet vines bloom on new growth and can be pruned late winter or early spring. Prune established plants yearly to control the rampant growth. Remove weak and damaged stems back to the main framework. Cut the side shoots back to two or three buds from the main stems that form the framework. If a major branch dies, prune back to the base. Then train the strongest shoot to replace it. You can renovate this vine by pruning all the growth back to 12 inches above the ground.


hummingbirds vines trumpet-vine

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