My Mandevilla splendens ‘Alice du Pont’ came in the delivery from Select Seeds. You know mandevilla–it’s that seductive pink-flowered vine with the glossy green leaves that you see EVERYWHERE in containers nowadays in summer. The flowers have nice substance and resemble morning glories. As you can see in the photo, they have those wonderful twirled-up buds that I always think if I’m looking at just the right time I’ll be able to see unfurl.
There’s a guy down the street from me who plants mandevillas all around his front porch; they twine up the pillars and make a spectacular show. I haven’t had that much luck with mine–they never seemed to get more than a few feet high when I’ve grown them in the past–but the price ($5.99) seemed a bargain, since I know I’ve paid as much as $24 for a plant in the past. The plant that arrived is nice and bushy, very healthy-looking, but I suspect it’s got a long way to go before it flowers. That’s okay; luckily with this puppy, the foliage is attractive, too. I put it in a pot by itself next to my back-porch posts. I looked at Home Depot for a small trellis to put in the pot, but the only ones they had were way too big. So I’m going to have to either jerry-rig something myself or keep looking. If all else fails, I can string string up the posts and let it climb on that.
The only thing that would make mandevilla better would be if the flowers were fragrant. Oh, or if the plants were hardy here in zone 7!