The Tropical Gardener: Great Vines & Climbing Plants in South Florida

Queen’s Wreath. Courtesy of Charles Nicholls.

There are many advantages living in South Florida including growing topical plants outdoors. In this column I will be discussing some great vines and climbing plants that members of the Equality Garden Club have recommended that grow well in their gardens.

There are “climbers” and there are those that are called “leaners”. Climbers twine their new growth on a support trellis or wire fencing, whereby leaners need an auxiliary system to grow and show off their best attributes. This article will not discuss the annual vines that can easily be grown from seed such as Moon flowers, Morning Glory, Cardinal Climber and Thunbergia (black-eyed susan vine).

The growing conditions of vines and climbers are quite similar for those plants discussed in this article:

  • Grows well in most soils in South Florida
  • Most are very aggressive growers and need to be trimmed during the growing season
  • Many vines can be altered by rigorous pruning to be shrubs and small trees. Some can be used as ground covers when not supported.
  • Plants generally require little fertilizer and generally do not require abundant quantities of water.
  • Great for screening off unsightly areas
  • Flowers of vines and climbers generally make good pollinators for butterflies, bees and moths.

There are other perennial vines that can be grown successfully in South Florida. Please let me know your favorites so that I may include them in future articles.

Personal contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Learn more about gardens by joining the Equality Garden Club:
Meets the third Wednesday of the month at 7 p.m. at Hagen Park Community Center, 2020 Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors, FL.

Chuck Nicholls, is a Master Gardener who founded the Equality Garden Club in 2010 and Co-founder of the Tropical Plant Fair held annually at Richardson Park and Preserve every November. The Garden Plaza at Equality Park was dedicated in February 2023 in his and his husband’s name (Mark Turner).


Phone: 954-514-7095
Hours: Monday - Friday 9AM - 2PM


2520 N. Dixie Highway,
Wilton Manors, FL 33305



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