Plant Type
Sunlight Amount

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Black-Eyed Susan Vine

An old-fashioned favorite, black-eyed Susan vine is beloved for cheerful yellow blossoms that unfurl with abandon from midsummer until the first frost. A little slow to get started in spring and early summer, black-eyed Susan begins to grow with gusto at a time when many perennials and some annuals take a midsummer break. This climbing plant will quickly ramble up a short trellis and is especially striking when trailing from a window box or hanging basket.

genus name
  • Thunbergia
light
  • Sun
plant type
height
  • 3 to 8 feet
width
  • Climbs to 8 feet
flower color
foliage color
season features
special features
zones
  • 10
  • 11
propagation

Garden Plans For Black-Eyed Susan Vine

Black-Eyed Susan Vine Care Must-Knows

Easy to grow from seed, black-eyed Susan vine can be started indoors or outdoors. To start indoors, plant seeds 5 to 6 weeks before the last expected frost in your area. Plant seeds in individual pots of seed-starting mix and cover them with about ½ inch of soil. Keep seeds warm and moist as they germinate and emerge, consistently providing a strong light source. As soon as nighttime temperatures are consistently above 50 degrees Fahrenheit, transplant seedlings outdoors in a spot that receives full sun and has moist, well-drained soil.

Start seeds directly in the garden once the threat of frost passes. Plant seeds in a sunny, sheltered spot in well-drained, rich garden soil. Plant seeds 6 inches apart and ½ inch deep. Place a climbing support, such as a trellis or tripod, nearby at planting time. Keep soil moist but not soggy. Don't panic if seedlings don't emerge right away; black-eyed Susan seeds often require 21 or more days to germinate. After germination, the plants grow slowly until midsummer, after which they grow quickly—scurrying up a trellis and creating towers of sunny yellow blossoms.

Pollinators' Buffet

Black-eyed Susan vine is a favorite nectar source for bees and butterflies. Plant it near a patio or porch where you can enjoy the antics of winged visitors when they visit. Pair this cheerful flowering vine with other nectar-rich plants for a grand backyard nectar buffet. Easy-to-grow annuals for bees and butterflies include ageratum, zinnias, cosmos, and nasturtium.

More Varieties of Black-Eyed Susan Vine

'Little Susie' black-eyed Susan vine

A Thunbergia alata that bears white flowers with a chocolate-purple center. It climbs to 8 feet. Zone 10-11, but it's usually grown as an annual.

'Orange A-Peel' black-eyed Susan vine

Bright orange blossoms with dark eyes. A Thunbergia alata that looks great in containers. Zones 10-11.

Orange Clock Vine

Thunbergia gregorii is distinguished from the closely related black-eyed Susan vine by its rich, pure orange flowers. This vine climbs 8-10 feet high with support or will scramble over the ground and become a groundcover. Zones 10-11, but usually grown as an annual.

'Sunny Lemon Star' black-eyed Susan vine

This variety of Thunbergia alata offers big yellow flowers with brown centers. It climbs to 8 feet. Zone 10-11, but it's usually grown as an annual.

'White-Eyed Susie' black-eyed Susan vine

Profuse blossoms of Thunbergia alata that are clear white with bold black eyes. Zones 10-11.

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