Vinca vine is a trailing plant with heart shaped leaves that are green, gold and cream colored. The leaves grow from the vine in un-paired units getting smaller until they reach the tip. The flowers are a really nice blue lavender. Vinca vine is a standard addition to many hanging baskets and is used only as a annual around here because the vinca vine is more suited for zone 7 than our chilly 4. This shot does not show the trailing aspect but we will add some more photos in a day or so.
One way to make sure you have enough is to learn the tricks and techniques of starting and growing vinca vine.
The vines can trail down 24 or more inches and it sends out new shoots from the root cluster as the season wears on. Even though the vinca is a zone 7 plant we find it can be wintered over in the greenhouse and this year we had good success at propagating them.
We started with a season end root clump. The root cluster is tightly bound just below the surface but we found that if we were careful we could carefully cut and tease the shoots apart in to separate plants.
We potted the separate plants with roots into 4 inch pots with Pro_Mix and kept them damp, not wet. Phyllis treated them with a low nitrogen fertilizer until they became established.
Now the plants are about 6 weeks old and sending out new shoots. We treat them with a evenly balanced fertilizer and give them the 10 day treatment with pyola oil like everything else in the greenhouse. Once a month Phyllis treats everything with Serenade to reduce the chance of fungal and mildew.
In-addition to the rooted shoots I took some stem pieces with 6 leaves and pulled the bottom 3 off. Then I dipped them into a rooting hormone and buried the bottom 3 nodes in Pro_Mix and kept them damp. A good number of them have developed roots and are showing signs of leaf growth and new shoots. It looks like the old 3 leaf stems are supporting the new growth and I probably will clip them back after some new shoots get started.
Over all we have found this to be a successful experiment in where we have turned one shaggy vinca vine into 20 healthy new ones. A few years ago we tried to get some started but were unsuccessful, probably do to the advice we were following. Somewhere we had read that a good rooting mix included peat and sharp sand. We mixed it up in the proportions suggested and even though it seemed a bit heavy we tried it and the experiment was a failure. The sand makes everything too heavy and does not allow water to pass through. We also tried to mix pearlite in with the peat but that was a mess and it did not hold water. Now all we use is straight Pro_Mix BX and we have no trouble at all.
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The bails weigh about 75 pounds and one bail will fill 100 gallons. Read more about it at the Premier site.
Next winter we will probably try for more vinca vine.