Will a Hummingbird Vine Die if I Cut it Back?
Hardiness Zone: 6b
Wanda from Church Hill, Tennessee
Wanda, Although there are probably plenty of gardeners out there that wish this were the case, cutting a Hummingbird Vine back (referring to Campus radicans or Trumpet Creeper/Trumpet Vine) will not kill it. If you're trying to shape its growth, you can selectively prune it anytime to clean up old wood or thin it by trimming smaller, younger stems as necessary. Hummingbird Vines flower on the current season's growth (new wood), so save any heavy pruning for the late fall or early spring and then cut the stems back by about 10 inches.
These vines are considered invasive in many growing zones. If you're looking to get rid of them, make sure you deadhead the flowers and collect the seeds to keep them from sowing voluntary seedlings. You can also try digging them out by the roots and pulling up any young shoots as they emerge (prepare to be persistent). Leaves can be sprayed with a 5-10% solution of vinegar, but be aware that this weed killer is non-selective and will kill or damage all plants it comes into contact with.
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I cut mine back each season.
Comes back fuller in Spring.
I prune throughout the summer, too. Otherwise it gets unwieldy and tries to overrun the garden. It never seems to mind!
Don't be afraid to cut it back--anytime. You cannot kill this plant.
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