Cissus Amazonica – A Jungle Vine

I recently came across this adorable little jungle vine while visiting a friend. There’s not a lot of research out there. In fact, some folks claim that because it isn’t the easiest plant to care for in cultivation, it will never be popular. I just fell in love with it and want to share it with you.

Cissus amazonica is a tropical climbing vine, sometimes with two-toned foliage: green on the top and pink underneath. C. amazonica is suitable for hanging pots and containers and can be grown outdoors where the weather remains consistently warm, such as from USDA zones 10b and higher. Because of its tropical nature, the vine has certain care requirements that other houseplants do not.

It is important to grow this vine in indirect sun to avoid burning the foliage. In nature it generally thrives in the understory of the rainforest so mimicking that environment as much as you can is important. Provide the Cissus with temperatures in the 50 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit range at night and 70 to 85 degrees in the daytime.

So far, sounds easy right? Here’s the kicker: kept indoors you will need to find a way to provide the Cissus amazonica with at least 80 percent humidity. A lot of hobbyists grow the plant in a terrarium for just this reason — it provides the ideal environment. Invest in a humidifier and stick the thing right next to the plant if you need to. Misting it frequently is a good idea as well. The more heat you provide the plant, the higher humidity it requires.

As a rainforest plant C. amazonica requires consistently moist soil at all times. Do not let the soil dry out. As you can see in the photo, the tree it’s climbing is pretty moist.

Cissus vines have a tendency to get leggy and roam when they’re content so if you need to prune it to keep it manageable, do so in March.

Now, you need to find one of these cuties!

Photo Courtesy: Pharkt/Flickr.com