A distinction is made between the American climbing trumpet (Campsis radicans) and the Chinese climbing trumpet (Campsis grandiflora). The large climbing trumpet that we offer most frequently is a cross of both types. There are numerous hybrids that differ mainly in climbing behavior, flowering time and frost hardiness. A peculiarity of the trumpet flower is its late bloom, in late summer to autumn. The main flowering period is from August to September, but also from June to October depending on the variety. However, the leaves only sprout very late. The plants are vigorous. An annual growth of two to three meters is normal. The trumpet flower should not be confused with the popular container plant, the angel’s trumpet.


  • Campsis radicans ‘Flava’ – yellow flowers and pale green leaves, flowering July to September, plant height 2 to 3 meters, annual growth about 20 to 35 cm
  • Campsis tagliabuana ‘Madame Galen’ – scarlet red flowers with an orange outer surface, flowering July to September, height 3 to 4 meters, annual growth about 20 cm, larger flowers and not quite as fast-growing as other varieties
  • Campsis radicans ‘Stromboli’ – strong red flowers from July to October, 2 to 4 meters high, growth of 25 to 30 cm per year
  • Campsis radicans ‘Flamenco’ – red to dark red flowers from July to October, height of growth up to 6 meters, annual growth of around 40 to 50 cm.
  • Campsis tagliabuana ‘Indian summer’ – orange flower with red-orange center, flower from July to October, height about 3 meters, annual growth about 20 to 30 cm
  • Campsis grandiflora – dusky pink to pink-red colored flowers, very large flowers, very sensitive to frost, can only be cultivated in pots and overwintered frost-free

Caring for the trumpet flower

Caring for the trumpet flower is easy, but there are all sorts of things to do. An appropriately warm and protected location, preferably in front of a warm house wall, is important for their survival. The plants do not tolerate cold winters and have to be protected, i.e. something packed. The foot is to be shaded. A pruning is important to encourage flowering and growth. A climbing aid is recommended from a height of 2 meters. In addition, care must be taken that the trumpet flower does not spread too much, because it likes to do that.


Above all, the location must be warm and sunny. The plant is not very hardy, so it must be protected, preferably in front of a warm house wall that gives off heat. The right location ensures the survival of the trumpet flower.

  • As sunny as it gets
  • It is important to have a warm location that is as sheltered from the wind as possible
  • A place directly in front of a warm wall or wall is ideal. This is also good for tendrils.
  • Often there are no flowers in places that are too shady.
  • Potted plants should also be warm and sunny in summer, but not exposed to extreme heat.
  • Place in a sunny place even in winter, but protect against cracks in the bark with brushwood.
  • Place the vessel on the styrofoam to isolate the roots from the cold subsurface.
  • Pack the planter well in severe winters.

Plant substrate

The trumpet flower grows on swampy forest edges, among other places. The substrate should be correspondingly moist. You don’t get drought very well. On the other hand, the plant has hardly any problems with a slightly moist soil. However, the floor must not be consistently wet.

  • Sufficiently moist soil is important. Even prolonged moisture is tolerated well.
  • A slightly nutrient-rich substrate is beneficial, the more nutrients, the less fertilizer.
  • Soil can be acidic, neutral or calcareous.
  • Otherwise, the trumpet flower can cope with almost any soil that is not too dry and too poor in nutrients.
  • Install drainage in the bottom of potted plants and use soil with a high proportion of humus so that water and nutrients can be stored.
  • Improve heavily loamy soil with humus and stony material, sandy soils with humus.


You don’t have to pay attention to anything special when planting. The bale should be watered. The planting hole must be sufficiently deep. It is beneficial to provide a trellis right away. So you can guide the plant in the desired direction.

  • Cut back before planting and water the pads well.
  • Fill the planting hole with some rotten leaves.
  • When inserting, be careful not to damage the roots.
  • Planting distance 3 meters
  • Although the trumpet flowers have adhesive roots, these are often not very well developed. A climbing aid is therefore recommended right from the start. This way you can steer the plant in the right direction.
  • From a height of two meters, scaffolding is essential as the wind often tears the shoots down.
  • Fall protection is ideal.
  • Shading the foot is beneficial.

Watering and fertilizing

Watering is much more important than fertilizing. Long periods of drought harm the trumpet flower. On the other hand, it has no problems with moisture. But permanent wetness is also not tolerated. Mulching is ideal because then the moisture in the soil is retained longer. Fertilizer is actually superfluous. Nitrogen fertilizer is actually harmful. It promotes leaf growth and the flowers are neglected.

  • Doesn’t like absolute drought
  • Must be poured when it is dry.
  • Plants cultivated in pots, in particular, must not dry out.
  • Soil should be moistened to the ground when watering.
  • Don’t forget to water it even in winter, but not that often.
  • Then avoid waterlogging at all costs.
  • Fertilizing is usually not necessary.
  • Mulching is best.
  • Provide with compost at most in spring
  • Do not fertilize with nitrogen, otherwise the plants will overgrow and hardly bloom.
  • Provide potted plants with slow release fertilizer at the start of budding.

To cut

The trumpet flower blooms on the new shoot. Like almost all summer-flowering climbing plants, it is therefore cut at the start of budding in early spring. It has to be pruned quite radically so that many strong flower stems can develop.

  • Cut from early February to early March
  • Radical cut is best.
  • Cut back all of the side shoots leaving the main shoot to only one cone with around 3 to 4 eyes.
  • Cut out thin shoots
  • In summer only cut in an absolute emergency!
  • In any case, you then cut away the flower roots.
  • In the case of rotten plants, one can try to shorten the long shoots in order to encourage the formation of short shoots that bloom particularly richly.
  • The trumpet flower can also be put back on the stick, i.e. the radical cut of the radical cuts. It sprouts reliably again, but usually does not bloom that year.
  • The trumpet flower can be raised as a climbing plant.
  • Trumpet flowers can also be raised as small stems or high stems. This is a good option, especially for those who want to cultivate them as a container plant. However, the bucket must be wintered frost-free.
  • It is best to cut the fruit before it is ripe. The plant likes to grow out and can then become a real nuisance.


At a young age, the trumpet flower is very sensitive to frost. It is therefore important to protect them well in winter. If the main shoots are lignified after a few years, the winter of the plant no longer bothered. It can happen that young shoots freeze off, but that doesn’t matter. This is regulated by cutting back. In very rough locations, winter protection is generally recommended, even for older plants.

  • Winter hardy down to -15 ° C, some varieties down to -20 ° C
  • Cover the roots well with leaves or straw
  • Tie sticks around the shoots
  • The Chinese trumpet flower was not made for Central European winters. It should only be cultivated in a bucket and overwintered frost-free.
  • Trumpet flowers in pots overwinter well in the garage or another frost-free or slightly frosty room.
  • However, they can also be protected outside at temperatures as low as -15 ° C. (except Chinese Trumpet Flower)


The trumpet flower tends to spread widely. It not only uses its seeds for this, but also root runners. So you always have to be behind, remove the bean-shaped seed heads before they ripen and also dispose of the root runners. Root runners can be contained if you put the plant in a large container without soil. There it cannot spread like that. The overall growth is curbed.

  • Offshoots – very easy
  • Lowerers – take root easily and quickly
  • Sowing – the fastest germination time in spring in a cold house
  • Self-sowing

Diseases and pests

Diseases are largely unknown. Powdery mildew does not spare this plant either. Pests aren’t very common, but they can happen.

  • Ants love the trumpet flower and live on the plant
  • Every now and then aphids or spider mites appear.

The trumpet flower is a very decorative climbing plant that, in my opinion, has only two flaws. On the one hand, it is not very hardy, at least at a young age, and on the other hand, if you are not careful, it spreads quite a lot. I’ve read that the plant has mutated into a real nuisance. But if you don’t shy away from the work to prevent this, you will be rewarded with beautiful flowers. Otherwise you just have to pay attention to sufficient moisture and use scissors in early spring. The rest almost goes by itself.

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