Combretum Fruticosum is a vine native to South America regions. Known to be a good soil stabilizer for steep slopes, it is a bush willow species that occurs from Mexico to northern Argentina.
The plant is called Chameleon vine for the way its flowers change from yellow to almost red.
The plant is easy to care for and can be grown in containers too. Grow it in a windowsill with grills which will provide it with support as well as sunlight. You can also grow it in hanging baskets.
The plant can grow in full sun or partial shade. An abundance of sunlight is preferable. Lighting could affect the plants blooms so be careful where you place this plant.
It has immensely showy brush-feather like flowers. They emerge from yellow buds and turn bright orange with age. The flowering season continues from early summer to autumn. Since the flowers keep on appearing in succession, the plant takes on an appearance of being multi-coloured. The flowers lead to a dry reddish-brown fruit.
The plant is moderately drought tolerant. Water when the topsoil looks dry. You can water it more frequently during the dry season.
It does not have specific soil preferences. It can grow in sandy, loamy or clayey soils. The soil should be well-drained and the pH of the soil can be acidic or slightly alkaline. Saline soils are not good for the plant.
It's an evergreen vine which can grow up to 20ft to 30ft if proper support is given. Without support, it will only grow about 8-9ft. You can prune it to grow like a shrub too.
Regular application of fertilizers will help the plant produce better blooms. Use any organic fertilizer. Water the plant before applying fertilizer.
No major pests or diseases are known to affect the plant.
Grown as a vine with a support system like a trellis, they create a dramatic showy effect. They are mainly used as ornamental plants.
The showy flowers are attractive to bees, hummingbirds and butterflies. The branches of the plant are sometimes used in the preparation of baskets and as substitutes for rope.