Thursday, May 26, 2011

Growing Stephanotis

Stephanotis is a vine that flowers with beautiful, 1 inch, scentilicious blooms.  The blooms smell heavenly.  Use of stephanotis as a wedding flower stretches back to Victorian times, and was known to represent marital happiness.

The stephanotis pictured above is growing inside in Ohio and flowers in May or June.  I purchased two plants from Logee's Greenhouse, and the vines flowered the first year.

I followed the directions on how to care for the stephanotis vines that came with it from the grower.  My small plants required a small container, so I opted for a 4 inch size clay pot for each vine.  Unglazed clay is recommended because the moisture wicks away from the plant and makes it easy to see when the plant needs to be watered.  To be successful with this plant, you have to be careful not to over water it.  When it is time to water, a good thorough watering is best, until the water runs out of the bottom.  Your vine might exhibit drooping leaves if it is dry.  If the leaves are browning from the bottom up and falling off, it is a good indication that you are over watering.

I over watered this plant when I first got it, and it looked terrible.  So, after some hopeless neglect, it started to grow!

Temperature and light are also important for any plant.  The stephanotis vine likes bright sunlight and moderate temperatures.  It can tolerate a minimum temperature of 50 degrees F and a dry atmosphere. 

I keep my stephanotis in an East facing window and water occassionaly...once a week, or once every two or three weeks, depending on the season.  I repotted both vines into a 10 inch ceramic pot, and they seem to be doing fine.  They are twining and growing on a homemade bamboo trellis.

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