Q. Please tell me more about Podranea ricasoliana, or common name Pink Trumpet Vine.
It may be one of the hardiest of vines introduced to the United States. During the fall, winter and spring it bears fragrant pale pink, bell-shaped flowers highlighted by red stripes. The plant is one of the Bignoniaceae family, which also includes the Jacaranda Tree. Podranea ricasoliana is commonly known as pink trumpet creeper, Port St. John’s creeper, and Zimbabwe creeper. It is generally thought to be native to South Africa. However, many South African botanists, such as Malan and Notten (2002), suspect that this climber may not be indigenous to South Africa, apparently based upon historical perspective. All [African] sites where Podranea ricasoliana are found have ancient connections with slave traders, who frequented the eastern coast of Africa long before the 1600s, thus alluding to an earlier introduction. It has become such a widely grown garden plant in all of the warmer parts of the world that it may prove difficult to find its real origin.
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