This unusual annual vine has up to 12 beautiful tubular flowers on each spike. It’s easy to grow, and excellent on a trellis, fence or in a hanging basket. Also makes a great cut flower. Climbs to a height of 5 m (15 ft) and quickly provides a dense leafy cover over any suitable supporting structure.
Plant as soon as soil can be worked in the spring. Seed has a very hard outer shell, so nick seed with a knife or file and place in a glass of warm water for a couple of hours before planting. Plant seed 60 cm (2 ft) apart, by a fence or trellis. These are vigorous vines that need support. For earlier blooms start indoors 3 weeks before transplanting into the garden. Start in 8 cm (3 in) jiffy pots or strips. Cover the seed lightly and keep the soil temperature at 21 C (70 F). Once plants are 10 cm (4 in) cool to 15 C (60 F). When plants reach 15 cm (6 in) pinch the centre out for bushier plants. Transplant carefully as the roots do not like to be disturbed. Feed weekly with 10-52-17 and liquid seaweed for strong healthy plants. Garden spacing 60 cm (2 ft).