Herself's Houseplants

Killing plants so you don't have to

Chestnut Vine ( Tetrastigma )

This vine is from Laos. It will grow a foot or more per month so be brave with the pruning shears. This picture is just a few days after we brought it home. It’s been a week now and we have 4 vines that have about 4″ of new growth each. It has wonderful long tendrils that hang down to grasp trees so it can climb on them.

In New England I kept it in a north facing window, it doesn’t mind the medium level light, the room itself is quite bright. I fear if we put it in a brighter window it will take over the place. It does excellent in offices, it loves the fluorescent lighting and warm temperatures.

It does mind the cold. The leaves near the window turned black in the winter. So keep this plant at 50’F or above if you can. If you leave your plant out and it dies back from the cold, warmth will often bring it back to life.

Water when the top inch of soil is dry, letting the water run until it flows from the bottom of the pot. This plant will forgive you letting it get a bit too dry or too damp, it won’t forgive low humidity. It will also drop all its new growth if you let the soil dry out.

The most difficult part of growing this plant is keeping the humidity high. It will drop its leaves, then die back if the humidity is too low for too long. It will also drop all it’s new leaves if the soil gets dry.

It is very hard to find this plant and that is a shame. I just replaced the one I left behind when we moved this weekend. It’s outside waiting for a prettier pot. It is too young to show the really cool tendrils that will form. The tendrils from this plant are often 8″ or longer and about half as thick as the stems.

The clear beads you see on the underside of the plant are plant secretions – not an infestation.

I just received another today from accents for Home and Garden, the delivery was fast and the plant looks beautiful.