Oxera pulchella, Royal Creeper

Oxera pulchella

Royal Creeper
Family: Lamiaceae    (Formerly:Verbenaceae)
Origin: New Caledonia
USDA Zone: 10-11?
USDA Plant Hardiness MapVine or creeper plantFull sunRegular waterWhite, off-white flowersPlant attracts butterflies, hummingbirds

Oxera pulchella (Royal Creeper) is a vine or creeper native to New Caledonia. This tender evergreen climber is quite splendid, with thick, leathery, bluntly ovate leaves. In the perfect conditions the stems will reach 8-10ft or more, boastingly displaying large clusters of white to off-white Azalea shaped pendant bells flowers with a hint of cream yellow. The perfect trumpet shaped blooms are sure to attract an abundance of butterflies, hummingbirds and other pollinating species.

This climber will require a full, sunny spot and fertile, light soil. It is hardy at least up to 30°F for a short time making it a good choice to grow in USDA Zone 10-11. Regular watering is recommended for best results, however after flowering the water should be reduced for conservation. The Royal Creeper is a winter bloomer, and it might very well be one of its most beautiful features, adding a dainty spectacle in the colder months.

For those living in cold climate, we advise planting the Royal Creeper in containers and using insulation materials to protect it from the cold. These materials can range from straw and wood shavings to plastic wrap, covering the plant with a burlap sack, and bring the pot indoors when necessary. Gardeners must also make sure to adjust the amount of water and fertilizer accordingly, as planted in containers the climber will require more frequent waterings, and a more balanced nutritional diet.

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