Crossvine (Bignonia capreolata) is a semi-evergreen vine that grows naturally in swampy forests and woodlands. The leaves are dark green in summer, turning to a reddish-purple in winter when it may also loose its leaves entirely in the northern parts of its range. When the stem is cut, a pattern resembling a Greek cross is revealed, hence the common name Crossvine. It tolerates some shade, but it flowers best in full sun. The showy, two-tone orange-red, trumpet-shaped flowers bloom in clusters of 2-5 and frequently produce a mocha fragrance. Blooming from March to May, it is an excellent early-season nectar source for native pollinators, and its trumpet-shaped flowers often attract hummingbirds. Crossvine is a larval host to the Gray Hairstreak Butterfly (shown above). Root suckers should be removed if spread is not desired; prune after flowering if needed to maintain shape and encourage next spring’s blooms.