In the spirit of the Halloween season I bring you a vine with blossoms so bloody beautiful it's ridiculous! It stabs the senses with a robust contrast of red and white. Feast (although I believe you already are if you're reading this post) your eyes on Clerodendrum thomsoniae commonly referred to as the Bleeding Heart Vine. This vine comes to us from tropical Western Africa. Seeing this vine in flower is truly special. It's almost unreal. Well good news for those of you that live in mild climates or have a super groovy conservatory handy (everybody has one of those, right?!) because this vine loves living in temperatures above 30-32 degrees/ 0 degrees celsius. As for the rest of us, may we covet this vision forever.
Clerodendrum thomsoniae is an evergreen vine that climbs up to 12 feet in length and width. This vine comes replete with plush green foliage detailed in luxuriously pleated detail. The visual is sumptuously lush. From spring through autumn you can expect to see clusters of pillowy white, latern-like calyces as pure as the driven snow. But it is what those calyces conceal that will make you drown in the romance of floral beauty. Vibrant red trumpets push through to complete the seduction. I think I might need a moment...Now where were we? Give this vine a part-sun/light shade situation, regular moisture, and well-draining fertile soil for it to throw down its roots. In return, it will show you what beauty it has in store.