Corkscrew Vine Plant

January 21, 2015

Corkscrew Vine Plant scientifically known as  Cochliasanthus Caracalla is a leguminous vine originating in tropical South America and Central America. This perennial vine (when grown in the frost) produces fragrant smelling flowers reminiscent of the Hyacinth flowers with a distinctive curled shape, giving rise to the common names corkscrew vine, snail vine, snail creeper, or snail bean. This quick growing vine is ideal for people looking for something new and colorful to grow.

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The blooms are simply exquisite, shot with primrose and shell-pink tones against a silvery base. They are shaped something like a nautilus shell, with a thick, coiled center and delicately curved outer petals. Each 1 1/4- to 2-inch blossom is distinctively beautiful — and you’ll get masses of them over the bloomtime of this 20- to 25-foot vine! Starting in midsummer (when the serious heat arrives!), they arise in foot-long bunches up and down the stem, dangling enticingly from arbors or large hanging baskets! The foliage is lovely too — 6 inches long, with three “fingers” and a soft, downy texture.


Flowers typically bloom in late summer or autumn and if pollination by ants is successful, the seeds would come soon after. The seeds grow inside pods but if the grower wants to cultivate them, the pods should be removed from the plant while still green to prevent exposure to winter temperatures.  Snail vines are also easily propagated from cuttings, take cuttings in early spring cut a 6-inch piece of the plant. Place the cutting in a 3-inch growing container with perlite and moisten it.

Once the vines grow quickly and once established it will rapidly cover a trellis or a wall. Due to its rapid growth the plant maybe need to be trimmed to keep it under control. During the growing season organic fertilizer may be applied.


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