A climbing vine, the Thunbergia alata is a native plant to Central Africa. In the southern United States, the vine is able to be grown as a perennial plant; returning year after year to provide their blanket of blooms. In northern states grow as an annual
Perennial versions of the vine can reach astonishing heights of over 20 feet, while annual plants can grow up to 8 feet. The vine grows quickly; featuring dense, lush foliage that is deep green in color. Blooms will generally begin to appear in early summer, and will continue to emerge throughout the summer. Flowers are extremely bright and showy; measuring approximately 1 ½ inches in diameter and featuring five petals. The center of the flower is quite dark, forming the “black eye” for which the plant is famous. This brownish, purplish black eye is the perfect foil to showcase the pristine white, sunny yellow, soft salmon and pumpkin orange blooms that can provide eye catching appeal right up to early fall.