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Products > Thunbergia alata
 
Thunbergia alata - Black-eyed Susan
   
Image of Thunbergia alata
 
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Vine
Family: Acanthaceae (Acanthus¹)
Origin: Africa, Central (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Bloomtime: Year-round
Height: Climbing (Vine)
Width: Spreading
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30° F
Thunbergia alata (Black-eyed Susan) - An attractive and cheerful evergreen vine that sprawls along the ground and clambers up on anything that will support it. The twining stems will reach 6-8 feet and are covered with triangular-shaped leaves that have winged petioles and nearly year-round, but strongest from summer through fall, orange tubular flowers that have dark purple, almost black throats. This plant is often treated as an annual in areas where it is killed by temperatures much below 28° F but in near frost-free zones it can be a perennial. Plant in sun or part shade and water regularly. Thunbergia alata comes from South Africa, and though similar to its tropical African relative, the Orange Clock Vine (Thunbergia gregorii), this plant is easily disguisable by the dark-centered eye of the flower and the winged petioles. The name for the genus honors the Swedish naturalist Carl Peter Thunberg (1743-1828) who was a student of Linnaeus and spent several years botanizing the Cape of Good Hope. The specific epithet is from the Latin word 'alatus' meaning "winged" in reference to the flattened wing like growth on the leaf petioles.  The information on this page is based on research conducted about this plant in our library and from reliable online sources. We also take into consideration observations of this plant in our nursery crops, as well as of plants growing in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens we visit. We also will incorporate comments that we receive from others and welcome getting feedback from anyone who may have additional information, particularly if it includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Thunbergia alata.
 
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