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ASARINA – Climbing Snapdragon Vines – By Paula Kraus

Asarina EG1

Asarina cascading off of a fence in the spring.

If you’re looking for some eye candy for your Earthen Garden with varieties that love to bask in the heat of the sun, and some that can also dazzle you while they are ‘made in the shade’ - look no further than Asarina – aka climbing snapdragons. This annual beauty is a show-stopper.  A couple of plants provide a mass of 1 – 3” long snapdragon-like flowers amid the 6 – 8 climbing vines, or in hanging baskets.  Most varieties thrive in sun, though some handle part-shade.

Asarina antirrhinifolia

Asarina antirrhinifolia


Start indoors two to three months before the last frost. Press into soil but do not cover. Needs light to germinate. Kept at 70-75° F., germination is in 14-21 days. When seedlings have several sets of true leaves, transplant into individual containers.  Additional light is required to keep the seedling from stretching to the point they become weak and leggy.  You will need a grow light bulb or a shop-light set up on an adjustable length cable. As the last frost date approaches you will need to harden off the seedlings by leaving them outside, in a sheltered area, for just a few hours each day.  Add a couple more hours and a little less shelter after the first week.

Hyacinth bean vine

Hyacinth bean vine climbing an elegant lamp post!

Varieties include: ‘Red Dragon’ Scrophulariaceae Syn. Maurandya – A unique variety with amazing giant flowers, up to 3in long in carmine-red, flowering from midsummer that will look wonderful in summer baskets!

Asarina antirrhinifolia Scrophulariaceae Syn. Maurandya – Late Spring to frosts. Vigorous climber with unusual and very pretty 1”  long snapdragons that will thrive in sun or shade.

Asarina is a climber you won’t want to pass up if you’re looking for a eye-catching vine!


Paula Kraus is a Master Gardner and owner of ’Seven Sisters Herb ‘N Garden’. She specializes in herb gardening, landscape restoration and plant plug horticulture. 

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