The Cup and Saucer Vine, Cobea scandens ( Koh'-bee-a), was named after Father Cobo, a Spanish Jesuit naturalist who is said to have grown it around his church. Thus it's alternate name, Cathedral Bells.
This is a rampant, fast-growing Mexican vine demanding heat. Cobea seed sprouts quickly with bottom heat or in the warm ground of late summer.
Where winters are severe, start now outside in pots, later protect in a sunny window, sunroom or conservatory. Cutting back excess growth will make the vines more bushy.
Next spring, plant the young vine in a warm, sunny, sheltered spot. Provide a rich, freely draining soil and keep moist.
Cobea is self-clinging to trellis, wood or brick but will not damage the finish like ivy. A strong young vine can grow up to 8m in a single season but are short-lived.
This tender perennial is often grown as an annual. The lovely, large flowers open greenish white, then change to mauve and finally violet purple before dropping.
They are mildly perfumed especially at night and are good to cut. There is a white flowering form as well.
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