The first time I laid eyes on the jade vine or Strongylodon macrobotrys, it was at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania. I couldn’t believe it! The color is unreal-almost unbelievable! It is a weird jade color and I have never seen another flower anywhere near this color. It almost looks like it has been dyed. The pictures don’t do it justice.
Jade vine is from the tropical Philippine Islands, where it is in danger because of its disappearing habitat. It grows in damp forests along streams and ravines and can reach over 60 feet long. It is pollinated by bats, which hang upside down to get to the nectar and the racemes can be over 4 feet long.They are even used for leis in Hawaii. Luckily, we don’t have to go to the Philippines (though I would like to) to see this rare vine. I have seen it at Longwood Gardens, the New York Botanical Garden, and the Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus, OH. There is one at the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory on Belle Isle in Detroit, but the plant isn’t large enough or old enough to bloom yet. I can’t wait! I would imagine that many conservatories in America and the world, even, have a jade vine in their collections. It is such an incredibly beautiful and unusual vine, it draws visitors from near and far to see it.