Asarina scandens. What a kewpie-doll mouth.

I love watching how the blooms trace along the ropey stems, scrolling intriguing outlines. See the letter “E”?


A trove of inspiration for a jewelry designer.


A galloping vine, wending its way this summer over the fence and into my neighbor’s peach tree. I hope they feel free to take appropriate action.
I’ve been gently guiding its enthusiasm away from the Monterey Cypress, Cupressus macrocarpa ‘Citriodora,’ one of three against the fence.
In frost-free areas, zone 9-10, a perennial vine, otherwise grown as an annual. This was supposed to have been the white form.
Now I try to visualize white instead of pink but can’t see how it would work. I mentally squint but see none of the details, just glare.
But that’s probably a failure of imagination. I bet the white form is beautiful against a dark background. (Like a blue fence, the original intention.)
I planted this vine in a container a couple years ago, then pushed it against the blue fence, occasionally remembering to add water.
Just Add Water. Such an important horticultural maxim, with few exceptions. This vine was no exception.
Sneaky roots found their way out of the drain hole at the bottom of the container and into the dry-laid bricks.
I pretended not to notice, and the vine found a more reliable source of moisture and a cool root run.

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5 Responses to Asarina

  1. Ryan Miller says:

    the pink sure does look great here. I can’t help but picture your white Rehmannia flowers when I imagine the white version of this vine. Your white Rehmannia is stunning but I agree with you that the pink flowers might be better in this case. How is your Rehmannia doing? And speaking of vines, are you growing Dicentra scandens this year? I finally picked one up and I’m excited about seeing it this summer.

  2. Denise says:

    Ryan, what a memory! The white rehmannia didn’t last the 2010 summer. I’ve received emails from people asking for a source, but I don’t know of a current one. The Dicentra scandens is in a container and doing really well. It should be a great climber for you.

  3. Scott says:

    That’s lovely…a nice, rambler…love how it cascades all over.

  4. Ryan Miller says:

    Denise, I’ve looked for the Rehmannia on the internet and haven’t found a source, though a friend in Sacremento says he sees them in nurseries. He offered to send me one but I didn’t want to put him through the trouble. I may have to change my mind. I’m going to give Asarina scandens a try from seed next winter.

  5. Denise says:

    Ryan, the pink rehmannia is a very strong grower here, whereas the white one just melted away mid-summer, but maybe it’d do fine for you. I say put your friend to the trouble! My asarina is from Annie’s Annuals — they have white, blue and pink varieties.

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