Bring the Tropics to your garden with Angel’s trumpets

Add some Tropics to your garden by learning how to plant Angel's trumpets.

Credit: Courtesy David Tarrant

Angel’s trumpets add a tropical feel to your garden and waft a scintillating scent through your yard

Brugmansia X candida or Angel’s trumpets have held a long fascination for BC gardeners. This particular cross’s parents, Brugmansia arborea and Brugmansia aurea are both native to Ecuador. The one pictured is Brugmansia X candida ‘Grand Marnier;’ I pinched a cutting from my neighbours which was hanging over my garden wall!!! We are friends.

While tropical in origin, these plants make rapid-growing specimens and may be planted outside for the summer months, then lifted and stored in a frost-free shed or greenhouse for the winter months. At UBC Botanical garden we used to take softwood cutting in mid summer around the third week of July and grow them in a minimally heated greenhouse over winter in order to have pretty big plants in 5 gallon containers for planting out the following summer.

They enjoy being planted in a semi-shaded situation, or if on a patio or balcony the ideal location is east facing with good morning sun and afternoon shade. They require regular watering and will soon wilt when dry, however, they respond quickly to a drink. Also, biweekly feedings with a soluble, balanced fertilizer really keeps them happy all summer long.

The scent that the flower exudes on warm evenings is magical. Both my neighbours have quite large Angel’s trumpet plants so the evening air is alive with their scent right now.

Bring a bit of the tropics into your garden this summer by planting one this year.