Butterfly Vine | Archives | Aggie Horticulture
Butterfly Vine

1. Q. What was that beautiful yellow-flowered plant which you said was good to plant on fences?

A. You must be thinking about Mascagnia macroptera (YELLOW BUTTERFLY VINE, GALLINITA). This native of Mexico is an evergreen scrambling or trailing vine which can easily be pruned into a dwarf shrub form. Foliage is a rich dark green which provides a contrasting dark background for the beautiful bright yellow flowers. Mascagnia blooms profusely during the summer months from May to September. Flowers occur in clusters so plants are very colorful. Each orchid-like flower has five yellow petals and may be as large as 1 inch across. Plant Mascagnia in full sun to light shade. Water to get well- established, thereafter this plant will be very drought tolerant and require little care other than pruning to shape or contain. This vine is very heat tolerant but is best adapted to U.S.D.A. Zones 8-10 since it can be damaged by severe cold. For north Texas, use as a container plant for seasonal color. Yellow Butterfly Vine can be grown on any type of support like a fence, pole or stake. It is easily pruned into a shrub and can even be used as a ground cover. The unusual fruit resembles a green to brown butterfly, thus the common name.

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