June 2, 2018
I am looking for recommendations for a hanging potted plant to place on our front porch eve. We have had ferns, succulents and flowering arrangements, but they do not last the summer. They face the west as the sun rises at high noon and later descending to the extreme west.
I am not surprised by your lack of success with ferns or succulents, as ferns prefer shade, and succulents actually like morning sun and afternoon shade. I would consider using a tropical—a nice one for a hanging basket would be either mandevilla or bougainvillea. They will thrive in hot, humid weather and love full sun. Another option would be lantana or portulaca. I assume you water, and as long as they don’t totally dry out and you fertilize periodically, any of these should give you great color all summer.
I have a Mandevilla in a pot which got quite tall and is still blooming on a trellis. I have heard you say that they need to be cut to release them from trellis before moving them indoors. Does that mean I should do the same or cut back more because it is in a pot? I will be storing it in the garage for the winter. Does it need light and water throughout the winter?
Typically mandevilla vines are quite prolific during the growing season. Many plants, even those grown in containers, are usually entwined in a fence or trellis of some sort, so cutting is necessary to release them to make the move indoors. Cut as little as possible when you move them, since there will be some natural decline in the garage. Unless your garage is warm, they need very little care for the winter months. The goal is to keep them from freezing, not keep them actively growing. They won’t look perky when you move them back outdoors next spring, but prune them hard then, repot, water and fertilizer and they should rebound.
I have a Mandevilla in a container that is doing so well. If I plant it in the ground will it survive our winters?
Mandevilla is a tropical flowering vine that will not survive even a heavy frost, much less the whole winter. If you want to carry it over for another season, take the plant indoors in October. It can be stored under the house, or treated as a houseplant for the winter.
I bought a Mandevilla last spring for the first time. In the past you have told us in the newspaper how to winterize it, but since I didn't have one, I didn't read your words of wisdom very carefully. I planted it in the ground and it has spread its vines on my lattice in the flower bed. What do I need to do to try to preserve it? Should I cut it back after a frost or do it sooner? After cutting it back, should I cover it with mulch and keep my fingers crossed, or should I did it up and put it under the house for the winter? When should I do all this?
Regardless of how much mulch you use, mandevilla will not over-winter outdoors. If you want to preserve the plant, cut it as little as possible to detach it from the trellis and pot it up. Store the plant under your house for the winter, or indoors. When you move it back outside it is not going to look perky. Spring is the time to cut it back. That is also when you can replant it in the ground if you choose, or grow it in a container. Start fertilizing and watering when you move it back outside and it should recover. If you choose to protect it for the winter, you need to lift and store before a killing frost. If you plan to pot it up and bring it inside your house for the winter, you need to do this by early October. If you are storing it under the house, as long as you beat a freeze you should be ok.
Soon I will be pruning my mandevilla and placing it in my greenhouse. Would you tell me what part of the vine to use to start new plants? How should I water and fertilize? Also, the mandevilla that is three years old did not bloom very well this summer. It is in partial shade. I fertilize with slow release fertilizer and Miracle Gro once a week. I water every other day.
First of all, mandevilla plants like full sun. If it is not getting at least six to eight hours of sunlight a day, it won’t bloom well. It also blooms on the new growth, so if the plant is large and well established and not growing much, that can also reduce blooming. Prune hard before moving it back outdoors, and consider repotting then as well. Mandevilla plants can be grown from cuttings. The parts you trim off in your pruning now could be used. Make sure each cutting is no longer than 3- 4 inches in length. You may want to use a rooting hormone on the cut end. Even in a greenhouse, you may want to keep the cuttings in a closed system to keep the humidity high and prevent the potting medium from drying out. If you are lucky enough to have a mist bed, don’t worry about it, but many hobby greenhouses don’t have that. A closed system is the pot inside a plastic bag. You could make a larger chamber since you do have a greenhouse. No fertilization until well rooted and growing. The soil should be moist but not waterlogged.
All links to external sites open in a new window. You may return to the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture web site by closing this window when you are finished. We do not guarantee the accuracy of the information, or the accessibility for people with disabilities listed at any external site.
Links to commercial sites are provided for information and convenience only. Inclusion of sites does not imply University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture's approval of their product or service to the exclusion of others that may be similar, nor does it guarantee or warrant the standard of the products or service offered.
The mention of any commercial product in this web site does not imply its endorsement by the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture over other products not named, nor does the omission imply that they are not satisfactory.