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Black-eyed Susan vine

An annual, uncomplicated and therefore very common twining vine for house entrances, facades, low walls or balconies. Also suitable as a hanging plant, as well as for interior gardening. The very common varieties "Red Orange" and "New Orange" grow up to approx. 4 meters in height and can be used to hide downpipes, lightning conductors and others.

(also known as "Brown Eyed Susan" - thunbergia alata)

Black Eyed Susan Vine (thunbergia alata) - right after rainfall


For sunny, or even better half-shady locations that are protected from heavy winds. Moist but water-permeable soil, best enriched with compost. A nutrient-rich humus soil, as well as regular fertilizing and watering, will foster growth and flowers. Susan can be easily be cultivated in pots and hibernate as a pot plant at approx. 6 degrees. Available mostly as seed mixtures or potted plants from spring onwards.

Caracteristics and Pruning

Mandevillas originally come from South Africa and Madagascar. They are annuals in Europe and have to be pre-cultivated before they can be sold and planted outside at the end of May. Individual plants must be 30 - 40 cm apart, 1 meter for pots with several specimens. Growth height depends on the variety - it's usually only about 2 meters, but some strong varieties in a large pot or planted in the garden soil can grow up to 4 meters (see photos). The leaves are heart-shaped, the shoots are twining a little and might be overhanging. The flowers are decorative, with colours varying from white to yellow-orange to brown-red with a brown-black funnel. The varieties "Red Orange" and "New Orange" traded by FassadenGrün belong to the "Sunny Susy"® series and convince with their strong growth and early flowering. In general, all varieties of the black-eyed or brown-eyed Susanne are extremely richly flowering, even in colder summers. The flowering time is from June to October, a single flower lasts about 5 days.

Growing aids on facades

Thin stakes, nets or ropes can be used. Binding material might be necessary. You can choose among the suitable designs for a cable system below. Choose a simple or a light design.

Cable systems?

Click on the image to see wich designs are adapted as a growing aid for mandevillas.

Brown eyed susan on a balcony
Street greening with Black Eyed Susan
Brown eyed Susan on a cable system
Greening of a rainpipe with black eyed susan vine
Thunbergia alata on a building
Green privacy screen with thunbergia

Suitable cable systems for Black Eyed Susan Vine

Please click on the graphics to see a detailed view of each design!

 = suitable        = sometimes suitable   = not suitable