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Monday, August 30, 2010

Bleeding Heart Vine (Clerodendrum Thomsoniae) PART 1



 I'm totally overjoyed to see this little bloom turn into a magnificent bouquet. I guess it got a lot to do with the sunshine it receive. I can tell you that this one does very well in the shady area. So do not dead-head your bleeding heart as more blooms may appear from the source. 

Its quite easy actually to propagate this plant. Just get a cutting and press it in the soil. Do keep this plant in the shade until it gives out shoots and later place it in semi-shade for them to bloom. Total shade will make the plant grow but without blooms. 

Another thing is its a slow growing plant, you will not see any result for weeks when you propagate it, so be patient and do not uproot those dry looking twigs (in the process of propagation) You will see new shots appear (peeling out) from the twigs. These are vines and very much a vigorous climber. So you want to have a proper space for that or you might prefer to keep the plant small but constant pruning. I'm planning to set all the vine plants that gives out pompous blooms. 


It may require a good adequate watering - both morning and evening based on the size of the plant.
You can grow it in a nice medium or large size pot, the plant will behave and grow based on the size of the pot. However I would recommend this to grow freely on ground if you want lushful beautiful constant blooms.

Also this plant is a heavy feeder and do feed adequately during the flowering season.
However take note that over-watering can cause them to bud-drop especially during the rainy season, hence a well balance fast draining medium to ensure no root rot occurs.


Being a Tropical plant does require good strong indirect bright sunshine, It can tolerate growing in shaded area however it must receive at least few hours of sunshine. It does not do well in heavy shaded area and may not bloom in such conditions. Also the leaves may turn yellow to light green/pale green and also become leggy. Another factor in the lack of sunlight may cause the plant to become stress and can attract pest to heavily attack on them.

Hence do give a thought if your are not having open garden area as this would not so well as indoor plant - even placing them as a balcony potted plant can be challenging if they do not receive adequate light.


Considering one of the most basic thing about planting material - this one doesn't require anything special - just any balanced potting mix will do. They seem to do fine in a medium or big potted plant - however they will do great if they are planted directly into the garden soil as these will require just that to produce those lovely blooms.

However if limitation occurs where you can only grow in pot - then a good balanced potting mix with rich amount of organic material and equal part of well drained soil which will help from root rot. 

Instance as such as these - they are often planted straight into open garden land where they are not in a pot - hence they appear hardy and able to take the heavy pruning.


One of the most challenging part for this shrub is pruning. They do grow extremely fast and become very unruly if not proper care is not given - especially when it comes to growth factor, this plant focus more on branching more stem and over growth rather than blooms which can be one of the down-side coming from this ever blooming plant.

However with the right pruning method and keeping it trimmed and manageable size - this one can be such a beauty. This plant can become into a full grown tree - hence pruning and keeping focused in making its growth into one main stem can allow it to bloom more gracefully and not creating a wild-like shrub with stem branching everywhere.

This particular plant blooms constantly on a daily basis.


Propagation can be done but stem cutting, stripping off the bottom leaves and poking it into a deep pot with a rich potting soil. Keep it in shade until you notice a new leaves growth.

Another method is to put the cutting into perlite medium (soaked in water)  Once taken roots, it should be carefully transplanted into a good potting mix..

Do click on the link below for more detailed information on the other Clerodendrum Plants and Posts:
Different Types of Clerodendrum Plant


Autumn Belle said...

James, your bleeding heart vines are giving lots of blooms now. You have really done a great job taking care of this plant. Wow and Cheers! Selamat Hari Merdeka and Happy Holidays!

Unknown said...

I don't have the type that you are holding but I have a red variety which grows like weeds. I still prefer the white-bracts type because they are more showy. Since you mentioned the Tristellateia australasiae and passifloras, I have a few of these too. My TA is about 17 years old and still going strong.

Bangchik and Kakdah said...

the plant looks very healthy indeed. Red with light yellow is quite a combination. ~bangchik

Floridagirl said...

Those flowers are beautiful! I do believe that this vine is a vigorous creature. My nephew recently bought a house that had sat empty for years. Guess what vine was growing wild all over the backyard? Yep. Bleeding heart. I told him not to, but he ripped them all out anyway. I'll bet it comes back.

Roslyn said...

Obviously it's very happy in that spot to flower so well. I's beautiful

Rosie Nixon Fluerty said...

Now I see why its called the bleeding heart vine with the red in the centre. It certainly is thriving for you in that spot and worth the wait to get such beautiful blooms.

One said...

Hi James, It's very nice. Vines tend to have very showy flowers, don't they?

James David said...

Aaron - Is it? I'm surprised - had tried moving it to a brighter location and feed it with flowering fertiliser?

Belle - Thanks Belle and Selamat Merdeka & Happy Holidays to you too.

Elsie - Yes, I have seen those ones - they have greenish bracts don't they and they are much hardier than these white ones. Great to note TA doing well. Do TA do well in hanging pots?

Bangchik - yes a good combo indeed.

Floridagirl - I guess if you planning to kill this one, its best to uproot its roots properly or else they tend to come back as if you have pruned them. All my vines are in pots and so they are under controlled.

Thanks Missy, Rosie & one for your nice comments.

Jacqueline said...

Remembering their humble beginnings, appearing like dried-up twigs from your mum's garden, what a marvelous contrast now! You've done an excellent job indeed, James! You've got such lovely clusters that make me so envious..lah and tempting me to reconsider growing them again! On second thoughts, better not as we're cutting down on the numbers...hehe!

Anonymous said...

In Mexico it is called Bandera, as the green, red and white colors of the flag... Beautiful plant you have there!

Unknown said...

My dad planted the red variety 17 years ago
It has taken over. Help!!! I have tried digging it out. Bleach, weed killer. Vinegar salt and dish detergent, muric acid (burnt my ankel) the plant is thriving. How do you get rid of it.
Mary Florida

James David said...

The life source is in the roots and stalk. I understand that most probably it's buried deep and it's accessibility to get water and nutrients making it grow back.
You have no choice but to dig it out carefully not breaking off any roots material underneath
And if should find any new shoots coming out, locate the source and pull it out.

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Tropical Garden, Batu Caves, Malaysia
My Malaysian Tropical Garden mainly focused on unique and colorful plants ranging from rare to common plants all around the tropical belt across the world. Ideal for inspiration for challenging areas in the garden space - indoor gardening, balcony gardening and small green spaces especially for ariods, bromeliads, begonias, edibles, cascading & vertical garden plants, succulents & cacti, orchids, together with both shade and sun loving plants.

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