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Products > Mandevilla laxa
Mandevilla laxa - Chilean Jasmine
Image of Mandevilla laxa
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Vine
Family: Apocynaceae (Dogbanes & Milkweeds)
Origin: Argentina (South America)
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Summer
Fragrant Flowers: Yes
Synonyms: [Mandevilla suaveolens]
Height: Climbing (Vine)
Width: Spreading
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 10-15 F
May be Poisonous  (More Info): Yes
Mandevilla laxa (Chilean Jasmine) - A moderately fast growing semi-deciduous slender-stemmed twining vine that grows to 12 feet or more wide and higher still with support and develops a succulent subterranean caudex. It has luxurious 6-inch-long bright green glossy leaves with a long tapering point and an abundance of fragrant white flowers in summer months foliage can be a bit sparse and spotted when not in vigorous growth. The tubular flowers are 2 inches long and flare open to 2 inches wide with what is described as a heady vanilla aroma most pronounced in the evening. Some seem not to be able to smell it at all but we find the fragrance to be sweet like a gardenia but not so powerful - you may need to sniff the flower to detect the fragrance. The flowers are followed by pairs of long bean-like fruit pods - these fruit and the fragrance cause some to call this plant the vanilla bean vine though it certainly should not be used in cooking.

Plant in full to part sun (blooms best in full sun) and water occasionally to regularly. Tolerates most soils and is root hardy to at least 12 F (we have seen claims to below 0 F) and it is deciduous in most California gardens as temperatures near freezing. Prune in late winter prior to new growth and watch for aphids on the flower buds.

This plant is native to northeastern Argentina, Bolivia and Peru, though for some reason, it is commonly called Chilean Jasmine. The name for the genus honors Henry John Mandeville (1773-1861), the British Minister in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The name Mandevilla laxa (Ruiz & Pav.) Woodson is a basionym of Echites laxa Ruiz & Pav. with synonyms including Amblyanthera suaveolens and Mandevilla suaveolens.

Mandevilla laxa has been grown in California since at least since first being listed in the Evans and Reeves Nursery catalog in 1935. We fist offered it in 1985 but discontinued growing it in 1996 due to lackluster sales and to make room for other plants but have put this plant back in production after receiving several requests to grow this wonderful plant again. 

This information about Mandevilla laxa displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.