Mandevilla Care: Growing The Mandevilla Trellis Vine

There are many varieties of the tropical vining flowers we call the Mandevilla plant, and all are gorgeous and showy.

The Mandevilla vine (rocktrumpet plant) has become a popular spring garden center item over the past few years.

mandevilla vine plant

The vigorous Mandevilla vine makes an excellent spring and summertime addition to any bright light landscape, patio or trellis vines and overwinter nicely indoors during the cold winter months.

In this article, we will share everything you need to know about growing, propagating and caring for the tropical Mandevilla vine. Read on to learn more.

Quick Mandevilla Vine Care Guide

  • Botanical Name: Mandevilla – (Man-de-vil’lah)
  • Common Name(s): Rocktrumpet, Chilean jasmine
  • Family & Origin: Apocynaceae – Central and South America
  • Grow Zone: USDA hardiness zones 9 – 11
  • Size: Vines can reach 10-20′ feet in length  
  • Flowers: Large trumpet-shaped rosy pink flowers – spring thru fall  
  • Light: Full sun or very high bright light | indoors in a sunny south or east window
  • Temperature: 65°-80° degrees Fahrenheit, likes humidity
  • Soil: Grow in loose, good quality, well-draining soil
  • Water: Thoroughly water to make the soil moist and allow the potting mix to almost dry between waterings.
  • Fertilizer: Use a slow-release fertilizer or a diluted water-soluble fertilizer solution
  • Pests & Diseases: Mealybugs, Aphids, Whiteflies, Scale, Spider Mites (Control with Neem Oil)
  • Propagation: Seeds or stem cuttings 4″-6″ inches in length
  • Toxicity: Due to the low levels of toxicity keep children and pets away from Mandevilla
  • Grooming: Keep plants compact and bushy by trimming back long vines.
  • Uses: Grow up a trellis or on a wire hoop, perfect patio color

Mandevilla Plants vs. Dipladenia Plants

The Mandevilla (Man-de-vil’lah) plant got its name from Henry Joseph Mandeville a gardener and British diplomat in 19th-century Argentina.

You’ll easily recognize this lovely tropical Mandevilla by its glossy oval leaves, colorful trumpet-like flowers, and enthusiastic vining habits. The Mandevilla vine is excellent for:

Dipladenia bush (Dip-lah-dee’-ni-a) is a popular cousin of the Mandevilla vine.

Its flowers and foliage are very similar, but its growth habits are quite different.

The Dipladenia plant grows as a shrub and is an excellent choice in the landscape, growing in a container or hanging basket.

The two types of plants require almost identical care, with the only notable difference involving pruning.

Both types can be used in the landscape, in containers (provide a trellis), in hanging baskets.

Use the Mandevilla vine when you want a climbing plant. A flowering Mandevilla trellis on a patio creates a beautiful look.

Use Dipladenia when you want a bushy plant.

Both the Mandevilla vine and Dipladenia are easy to care for during the growing season.

Both types are rampantly floriferous from spring to autumn.

They make great companions for one another in large planters or in a flowerbed setting.

The Mandevilla vine is also one of the top flowers that hummingbirds like.

What Are The Requirements And Tips For Growing Dipladenia and Mandevilla Vine?

These tropical vines like bright light, warmth, good drainage and protection.

Choosing the right location in the garden and preparing the soil well are the first necessary steps for success with Mandevilla and Dipladenia.

Monrovia Plant Expert Shares How to Garden With Sun Parasol Mandevilla

The Suntory Collection of “Mandevilla Sun Parasol” offers many different uses in the garden.

They make wonderful plants in a container growing as a small bush on a patio, planted in large tubs at hotels and even as baskets.

With both bush types and vining varieties (which reach 4′ or 5′ feet high) become covered with rich, vibrant, colorful blooms.

The Sun Parasol Mandevilla collection are not messy plants making them perfect for use around a pool or on a patio.

Our current favorites: Sun Parasol Pretty Pink Mandevilla and the New Sun Parasol Red Emperor Mandevilla. More ideas in the video.

Providing Just The Right Amount Of Sun

The foliage of the Mandevilla is certainly attractive, but the showy flowers are the real show-stopper.

To be sure of ample, healthy blooms, you must place your Mandevilla in an area where it can stay warm and get plenty of full sunlight or indirect bright light.

You’ll find the Mandevilla plant growing in full bright sun in south Florida, but they seem to do better with a light bit of shading. The morning sun is ideal.

If you don’t provide enough bright light, you won’t get a good showing of flowers.

A high shade setting that receives good sun in the morning and/or afternoon but sheltered at high noon is ideal.

Protect the Mandevilla from strong winds is also conducive to healthy flower production.

Drainage And Watering

The best soil for Mandevilla is a well draining soil.

The Mandevilla vine and Dipladenia do not like to be consistently wet or root rot may begin. Allow the soil mix to almost dry between waterings.

Provide a slow, steady trickle of water on a weekly basis. Soak the soil thoroughly, and be sure the plant has good drainage.

The Mandevilla vine does not like to stand in water and will develop root rot if not properly drained.

Adjust your watering schedule as needed if you notice signs of plant distress.

If you are keeping your plant indoors, spray the leaves daily to keep humidity levels adequate.

If you water outdoors with a hose, treat your Mandevilla to a shower to clean the leaves and provide moisture.

Choose The Correct Pot Size

When growing Mandevilla or Dipladenia in a pot or container, be sure not to overdo the size and make sure it has drainage holes.

A Mandevilla vine should have enough room for the roots to spread a bit, but if given too much room, they will put all their energy into producing roots, and you won’t get good flower production.

mandevilla giant pink

If you notice your plant becoming root-bound in its current container, give it more room on the sides when you repot.

Giving it a deeper pot can interfere with blossom production.

Typically, with Mandevilla vine care you repot the plant every year or two in the springtime. When repotting, be sure to massage the roots to stimulate new root growth. Cut back and give your plant a pruning to remove dead, dried or ailing leaves and stems.

Don’t worry about hurting the plant when pruning. These vigorous growers spring back enthusiastically from dramatic pruning to produce bundles of showy flowers on new growth.

Gardening Tips & Tricks : Growing Mandevilla Flowers

Mandevilla Plant Care Requires Rich, Well-Drained Potting Mix

One of the most important aspects of caring for Mandevilla lies in providing the right substrate or potting soil. Mandevilla vines need loose, well-drained soil and the right balance of nutrition.

A good compost-based potting mix or soil for container plants can make a good base, but you should mix it with some very fine gravel or sand for lightness and good aeration.

A combination of builder’s sand, coco coir or peat moss and good quality soil in equal parts is ideal.

Remember before adding any soil mix, line the bottom of the pot or container with coarse gravel, broken pot shards and/or Styrofoam packing peanuts to provide better drainage.

Use The Right Fertilizer At The Right Time

When purchasing a Mandevilla vine at a nursery or garden center, the plant will probably already have ample slow-release fertilizer incorporated into the soil to last a couple of months. 

Don’t add more fertilizer to a newly purchased plant. It is unnecessary and may end up fertilizer burn of the roots.

When you’ve had your Mandevilla vine for a while, you’ll want to fertilize it cautiously using a slow-release fertilizer or a diluted water-soluble fertilizer solution. Alternately, top dressing with a good organic compost may provide for the needs of your plant.

Alternately, top dressing with a good organic compost may provide for the needs of your plant.

Understand that the mandevilla fertilizer needs of houseplants differ from those of ones growing outdoors. Likewise, the fertilizer needs of growing, flower producing vines differ significantly from plants being held in dormancy. Here are a few guidelines to follow.

Fertilizer For Spring/Summer Growing

For growing, flowering plants in the spring and summer use a well-balanced, water-soluble fertilizer that delivers a healthy dose of phosphorous (e.g. 10-20-10).

This will help your Mandevilla vine maintain the energy it needs for vibrant new flushes of growth.

Observe your plants carefully. If they do not respond with the desired results, adjust accordingly. During times of heavy growth and flowering, you may need to apply a liquid fertilizer once every week or two. As the growing season winds down, you should stop fertilizing to help prepare your plant for the winter months.

For winter care: In late August, give your Mandevilla vine a light feeding with a high phosphorus (e.g. 10-56-14) water-soluble fertilizer to fortify it for the coming winter months. This will be its last meal before spring.

Mandevilla Vines Pests and Diseases

A part of good Mandevilla plant care means you are always on the lookout for pests and problems on your rocktrumpet and all of your plants.

This is especially true when preparing to bring your Mandevilla indoors for the winter.

This preparation time provides the perfect opportunity to treat effectively for the most common Mandevilla pests:

  • Aphids
  • Scale insects
  • Mealybugs
  • Red spider mites
  • Whiteflies

Common Mandevilla and Dipladenia Pests

Aphids typically attack plants weakened due to inadequate care or poor location.

If you find these tiny little bugs on your Mandevilla, try to getting rid of aphids with a strong spray of water. Follow this up with treatment using organic insecticidal soap or neem oil.

Take steps to remedy any problems in plant care or location to prevent reinfestation.

Bottle of Neem Oil Spray
3 in One Bottle of Neem Oil Spray | PlantCareToday.com

Mealybugs collecting under leaves and scale insects on Mandevilla usually show up on thirsty plants. Lack of proper watering in summertime or low humidity indoors in wintertime can attract them.

Correct problems with your watering and humidifying routines and treat with a neem oil insecticide spray.

Organic Neem OIl 100% Pure Cold Pressed - (16 oz) - OMRI Listed for Organic Use
Neem Oil is our FAVORITE natural organic insecticide. Control aphids, mealybugs, plant scale and more. It can also be used as a soil drench.
If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

If you see webbing on the backs of the leaves, check for an infestation of spider mites. Spider mites turn up when conditions are too hot for the health of the plant.

Treat with neem oil and relocate your plant to a cooler, more sheltered location.

Frequent examination of your plants will help keep these pest problems under control.

Be sure to look your plants over thoroughly every few days.

Perform a particularly thorough inspection before overwintering Mandevilla.

More on Mandevilla Winter Care

Be sure to check the undersides of leaves and examine stems and leaf axils for any sign of unwanted insects, larvae, and eggs.

Prune off diseased or infested portions of the plant. Use a strong spray of water to knock the pests off and then follow up with appropriate treatment.

It’s always best to use the gentlest and most natural effective solution possible. This is why we recommend neem oil, an entirely natural oil very effective against:

This safe, natural product is a must-have for any flower and/or veggie gardener. Buy Neem at Amazon.

Organic Neem OIl 100% Pure Cold Pressed - (16 oz) - OMRI Listed for Organic Use
Neem Oil is our FAVORITE natural organic insecticide. Control aphids, mealybugs, plant scale and more. It can also be used as a soil drench.
If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

In addition to insect pests, the Mandevilla vine may be subject to problems such as fungus and/or yellowing, dropping leaves.

The fungus is a sign of excessive watering. It may also be a sign of inadequate ventilation.

Adjust your watering schedule and take great care not to water-log the plants.

Prune the plant to help air circulate through its leaves.

Some yellowed and dropped leaves are a natural part of the growth and life cycle of the plant.

Don’t be alarmed by this unless your plant is losing a significant amount of foliage. If this is the case, your plant may be too cold.

Move it to a warmer, more sheltered setting and/or turn up the thermostat.

Does Deer Eat The Mandevilla Plant?

We’ve been asked this question: “Is Mandevilla deer resistant?”

In our research, we have found several references on the websites “stating” that Mandevilla vine is deer resistant.

However, the Mandevilla is not listed as a deer-resistant plant or vine in the Rutgers University New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station deer resistant database. [source]

With the many Mandevilla colors, species, along with the many new hybrids, there probably are some varieties that are deer resistant and some which are not.

At this time we cannot offer an authoritative source to answer the question if the Mandevilla is deer resistant or not.

 Profile Of The Mandevilla Plant

The Mandevilla vine is a member of the dogbane family. All parts of this plant are toxic, so take special care to keep pets and kids away.

This evergreen plant tends to vine, but you may also grow Mandevilla bushes in a heap or trail along the ground if it doesn’t have a trellis like this or other structure to climb.

The plant hails from South America and Central America and is not cold hardy in the United States, but it does exceptionally well during the warm months. It is fast growing flowering vines, vigorous and can attain a significant amount of growth and produce a lot of flowers in a few short months.

It is fast growing, vigorous and can attain a significant amount of growth and produce a lot of flowers in a few short months.

This decorative plant produces shiny, deep green, oval leaves and large, trumpet-like flowers continuously and in abundance from May through October in most parts of the US, when well-cared-for.

The plant’s botanical names are Mandevilla sanderi and Dipladenia sanderi both of the genus, Mandevilla. There

There are over 120 member of this genus all producing gorgeous flowers in an array of shades of white, pink and mandevilla red.

It should be noted there are some vines which produce yellow flowers and are called yellow Mandevilla, but these are actually Urichetes or Pentilinon luteum.

As potted plants, Mandevilla and Dipladenia make an excellent addition to the home, balcony, deck or patio.

Planting directly in the ground (except in the south) is not recommended in the US. The Mandevilla vine are not at all cold hardy and cannot tolerate temperatures lower than about 45° degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period.

If planted in the landscape, they can be dug up, cut the plant back and over-wintered indoors, or cuttings can be taken to propagate young Mandevilla during the winter months to take the place of the parent plants in the spring.

The Many Species and Mandevilla Varieties

Although there are well over 120 species of this attractive plant, only a few are under cultivation. Here are some of the popular varieties you may encounter.

Mandevilla Alice du Pont

Grow in a container or in the landscape. If allowed to grow freely in the landscape, it can reach a height of twenty feet. If kept in a container, it can be pinched or cut the plant back to control its size.

It is so adaptable that it can be kept in very small pots, hanging baskets or larger containers with no ill effects on its blooming abilities. This plant features large (3″-8″ inch) glossy, dark green, oval leaves and impressive clusters of large (2″-4″ inch) trumpet-shaped pink flowers.

Mandevilla Splendens

This plant produces lovely pink flowers, but differ a bit from those of Alice duPont. Splendens’ flowers are pale pink with a deep pink center. As the blossoms mature, they become a deep rose color. The vining tendrils can reach a length of fifteen feet, but this plant is often successfully pruned into a shrub shape.

Mandevilla sanderi

One of the best-known and most popular is Mandevilla sanderi. This plant features very dense foliage and may sport flowers of white, pink or red. The flowers are arranged in impressive bunches and are two or three inches across. The plant can grow to a height of 2-7 feet.

Mandevilla boliviensis

Boliviensis produces an especially abundant number of very large white flowers with dazzling yellow centers. Leaves are large, smooth, sturdy and shiny. The tendrils of this semi-evergreen plant can stretch to a length of about seven feet.

Mandevilla x amabilis

One of the largest species is Mandevilla x amabilis, which is a hybrid and can attain a height of ten feet. The plant produces strongly textured, dark green leaf and pretty, pale pink flowers that are lightly scented.

Mandevilla Laxa

Also known as Chilean jasmine, Mandevilla Laxa (Mandevilla suaveolens) is not from Chile, but Argentina. This giant can grow to a height of 20 feet and produces large, richly fragrant flowers in shades of white ranging from snowy to a deep cream color.

Some say the flowers smell like gardenia flowers. Its long leaves are elliptical with a heart-shaped base.

This plant needs an exceptionally rich potting mix, and it is an exception among Mandevillas because the roots can be cold hardy to approximately 5° degrees Fahrenheit.

Just chop it back all the way to the ground in late autumn and insulate it with a pile of leaves. It will cheerily return in the springtime.

You may also like: Clematis vine, beautiful flowers, a perfect trellis plant

mandevilla-stars-stripes
Stars and Stripes a real show stopper

Mandevilla Plants Interesting Introductions

  • White Delight has soft stems and pretty, bright white flowers. Its vines attain a length of 12′ feet, but this plant is very accommodating when pruned to a smaller size and shape.
  • Stars and Stripes boast red blooms with white stripes. Its leaves are large and glossy, and its vines can attain a length of 12′ feet.
  • Summer Snow’s flowers are very large and a dazzling white offset by glossy, dark green leaves.
  • Red Riding Hood produces impressive deep red flowers.
  • Ruby Star’s flowers are an exceptionally deep red shade.

Yellow Delight (Pentalinon luteum) is not a true Mandevilla, but it is a good imposter. It’s a low-growing shrub with jaunty yellow flowers that do very well as a hanging basket plant.

Close up of bright red Mandevilla "Ruby Star's" flower
Bright red Mandevilla “Ruby Star’s” flower up close growing on arches in Palm Coast, Florida June 2018 – image iPhone 5 plantcaretoday.com

Creative Ways To Plant Mandevilla And Dipladenia

Both Dipladenia and Mandevilla plants are gorgeous planted together, as solo plants or as the central focus of a large container garden.

Placed centrally in a large pot with an obelisk or trellis to climb, Mandevilla makes the perfect contrast for a wide variety of foliage plants such as coleus, oregano, petunias or even the elephant ear plant, which is another good plant for the patio.

How to plant a Mandevilla vine in a patio planter to enjoy all summer.

  • Add a dazzling splash of color to your landscape with Mandevilla vines trailing over your arbor, pergola or trellis flowers.
  • Add these cheery, vigorous plants to your entryway, patio or deck in attractive containers.
  • Dress up your mailbox with an attractive garden of Dipladenia and Mandevilla plants to really make your home’s curb appeal pop.

How to Plant Around a Mailbox

  • Use cuttings from your own plants to add lush, luxuriant baskets overflowing with vast billows of fragrant flowers and glossy foliage.

In terms of performance in the landscape, Dipladenia and Mandevilla can’t be beat. Larger varieties of Mandevilla can grow as much as twenty feet in a single growing season. You can count on having your trellis or arbor luxuriously covered in the blink of an eye.

Have you ever asked – Is The Mandevilla plant poisonous?

Propagating Dipladenia and Mandevilla Plants Is Easy

There are three ways to propagate these vigorous plants:

#1 – Purchase And Plant Seeds Or Gather Your Own Seeds

If you purchase seeds of Mandevilla plants, they are most likely hybrids. For this reason, if you collect your own seeds from the parent plants, the offspring may be quite different from the parents; however, this is not always a bad thing.

No matter how you get your seeds, early spring is the best time to sow them indoors. Use small pots and moist seed starting mix and cover the seeds lightly.

Place the seed pots in a bright, sunny place (or under a plant grow-lamp) and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over them. Keep them at a steady temperature of around 77 degrees Fahrenheit. Your seeds should sprout within a week-to-ten days.

Care for them as you would any seedling indoors through the early spring and you should have some jaunty young plants by late May or early June. Harden them off gradually and transition them to outdoors.

It’s easy to buy Mandevilla seeds online like these from Amazon – 100 Rainbow Mandevilla Seeds and Beautiful Flower Seeds

#2 – Take Cuttings From A Mature Mandevilla Vine And Root Them

When pruning plants back before winter, select some likely cuttings for rooting. Good candidates should be 3″-5″ inches long with a couple of leaf nodes on the stem.

To root, remove the lower leaves from the stem and dust the stem with rooting powder. Next, poke the end of the stem into a good, light, well-draining soil (as described above).

Moisten the soil lightly and drape plastic wrap over plantlet or place the pot with cutting inside a clear plastic bag to act as a greenhouse.

Place your cuttings in a warm (77° degrees Fahrenheit) place with bright, indirect light. Be sure to lift the plastic or open the bag for a little while every day to provide good ventilation and prevent mold growth.

#3 – Layer Tendrils From Growing Mandevilla Plants Into Pots And Planters For Rooting

This is a very natural and carefree way to propagate Mandevilla. To do this, simply set a pot full of properly prepared soil next to a mature plant during the growing season.

Guide a tendril of the parent plant to make contact with the soil surface in such a way that a leaf node touches the soil.

Press the tendril into place and cover the leaf node area with soil. Leave the tip of the tendril exposed to the air. Anchor the tendril in place with a bent piece of wire or a stone.

Take care of this setup just as you would a potted plant. Keep the soil evenly moist. Within a week you should see roots forming at the leaf node.

Let the new plant establish itself for a couple of weeks. Once it has set down good, strong roots simply cut its “umbilical cord” and separate it from the parent plant. You should have a sturdy, vigorous new potted plant ready to enjoy.

Mandevilla Plants Add Color And Opulence To Your Home And Garden

Dipladenia and Mandevilla flowers are easy to grow and provide a dramatic and satisfying showing of gorgeous blooms throughout your growing season.

These enthusiastic, cheery plants like lots of light and warmth, nourishing, well-drained soil and simple, consistent care and watering.

Whether you grow them outdoors as an annual or enjoy the many gardening challenges and activities they provide you year-round as houseplants or mandevilla propagation projects, you are sure to enjoy these exotic, luxuriant tropical plants.

Family: Apocynaceae

sources: 1 | 2 | 3

JOIN Our FREE Plant Care Newsletter 

By entering your email address you agree to receive a daily email newsletter from Plant Care Today. We'll respect your privacy and unsubscribe at any time.