890 Strongylodon macrobotrysCommon Names: jade vine, emerald creeper Family: Fabaceae (bean Family)
Jade vine is an evergreen twining vine with thick woody stems an inch or more in diameter and growing to 70 ft (21.3 m) or more in length. The leaves are trifoliate with three oblong leaflets, each about 3-5 in (7.6-12.7 cm) long, the middle one largest. In spring and early summer jade vine bears bluish green claw shaped flowers 3-5 in (7.6-12.7 cm) long in huge hanging clusters up to 5 ft (1.5 m) or more in length. The inflorescence is truly amazing. The cylindrical pea pods which follow are about 2 in (5.1 cm) long.
Jade vine, Strongylodon macrobotrys, is native to the Philippines where it grows in tropical rain forests.
CultureJade vine grows best in neutral to acidic soils. Light: Grow jade vine in full sun with some shade at midday. It performs best where its roots are in the shade and its top in the sun. Moisture: Water freely during the growing season and sparingly in winter. Hardiness: USDA Zones 10 - 11. Jade vine is a tropical liana that does not tolerate frost. Maintain winter temperatures at 60ºF (15.6ºC) or above. Propagation: Pieces of semiripe stem can be rooted with bottom heat. Seed should be sown as soon as ripe at 80ºF (26.7ºC) or above.
Jade vine is grown in tropical landscapes, trained to a stout trellis, arch or pergola. The pendulous festoons of blue green blossoms are spectacular when viewed from below. Jade vine is sometimes grown in tubs in the greenhouse.
The aquamarine color of jade vine's flowers is nearly unique in the plant kingdom. Hanging amidst lush tropical foliage, the flowers are practically luminescent. Jade vine is cultivated in Hawaii for the flowers which are used in leis.
Steve Christman 12/15/00; updated 3/6/04