Asarina Plant Growing & Care Guide for Gardeners

In this Gardener's HQ guide, we'll explore cultivating Asarina plants in your garden, indoor spaces, and other settings.

Chickabiddy, and Creeping Gloxina: Cultivation & Garden Use

Asarina is a half hardy perennial, however it is normally treated as an half hardy annual by gardeners in cooler climates.

Most of the members of Asarina have been recently reclassified. However as gardeners used both the new and old names, the information in this page holds true for the species described.

Asarina erubescens
Asarina erubescens by Philip Bouchard.

Depending on the species it may flower anytime from late spring to late autumn.

Some of the common names for Asarina include Chickabiddy, Creeping Gloxina, Climbing Snapdragon and Mexican twist.

The genus Asarina is synonymous with Maurandya.

Description of Asarina

Asarina are climbing vines that usually have pink trumpet like flowers. The heart shaped leaves are often scented.

Asarina procumbens
Asarina procumbens by Tim Waters.

Information on Asarina and commonly grown garden species

There are sixteen members of the Asarina genus and they are native to Central and Northern America and to the South of Europe.

Asarina used to be a genus of the Scrophulariaceae family (figworts), however they have recently been reclassified - and now the family only contains 5 genera. During this reclassification most of the Asarina members have become classed in different genera:

Asarina erubescens: common names Creeping Gloxina; Mexican Twist; now Lophospermum erubescens

Asarina petrophila: common name Rocklady; now Holmgrenanthe petrophila

Asarina wislizeni: common name Balloonbush; Creeping Snapdragon; now Epixiphium wislizeni

Asarina acerifolia: common name Brittlestem; now Mabrya acerifolia

Asarina filipe: common name Yellow Twining Snapdragon; Now Neogaerrhinum filipes

Other commonly grown plants include:

Asarina purpusii: Victoria Falls

Asarina barclaiana: Twinning Snapdragon

Asarina procumbens: Creeping Snapdragon

Asarina scandens: Chickabiddy; Climbing Snapdragon

How to Grow Asarina

When planting Asarina outdoors it is best to sow the seeds on the surface from late in the winter until the early spring.

If preparing Asarina for later transplanting as seedlings, it is best to sow the seeds indoors in peat pots three to four months before they are due to be transplanted outdoors in the early spring when the temperature will not drop below 5 degrees Celsius (41F).

Seedlings should be planted at a spacing of 30 cm into a sunny area of the garden; ideally with fertile soil, that is moist but well drained, and with a pH of 6 to 7.

Caring for Asarina

Asarina is fairly easy to look after; as they are climbing plants they should have a trellis support to grow upon.

Asarina should be well watered and fed on occasion. If you require more plants then cuttings can be taken during the summer.

Specific growing information for Asarina plant species

Asarina (Lophospermum) erubescens (Creeping Gloxina; Mexican Twist)

As a tender perennial this species is usually grown as an annual in gardens. Asarina erubescens are climbers that range in height from as little as six feet (1.8 m) to as much as 16 feet (5 m).

They make very interesting plants to grow either on a trellis or hanging from a basket in an area of the garden that has full sunlight.

Seeds can be planted outside in mid winter, or you may prefer to start them off indoors, in which case start off in early winter; about 12 weeks in advance of transplanting outside in early spring.

It is best to sow the seeds in peat pots so as to cause little disturbance when transplanting.

Plants should flower from early summer through to mid autumn and the colour of the bloom is down to the variety that you sell; often with pink trumpet sweet pea like flowers, though petals may also be lavender or white.

In the USA plants are able to grow in zones 5 through 11, and grows natively in Hawaii and Porto Rico.

Once growing it is pretty easy to care for Creeping Gloxina; water plants regularly but not excessively, if you require more plants then either propagate by taking softwood cuttings, or collect seed pods once they have dried.

Asarina procumbens (Chickabiddy; Creeping Snapdragon)

These perennials are usually treated as annuals by gardeners, though they have been known to be fairly frost tolerant. Asarina procumbens carry pale yellow scented flowers that are able to bloom from spring through Autumn. Although the plant is generally low growing (1 foot; 30 cm) it is able to creep over fairly large distances.

Plants perform best in full sunlight, but are able to grow fairly well in partially shaded conditions. Ideally soil should be sandy and well drained. It makes an ideal plant for rock gardens, hanging baskets, or for trailing over a wall. Asarina scandens is also known as Chickabiddy.

Asarina Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Chickabiddy, Creeping Gloxina, Climbing Snapdragon, Mexican Twist.
Family: Plantaginaceae / Scrophulariaceae.
Life Cycle: Half hardy perennial, often grown as a half hardy annual.
Height: Large range in size from as little as 6 Inches (15 cm) up to 16 feet (500 cm) for climbing species.
Native: Central and Northern America, Southern Europe.
Growing Region: Zones 3 to 10. As a perennial in zones 9 and 10.
Flowers: Species dependent: late spring; summer; autumn.
Flower Details: Usually pink, though yellow and lilac varieties are available. Trumpets.
Foliage: Cordate. Deltoid. Toothed. Hairy.
Sow Outside: Soil surface. Late winter or early spring. Spacing 12 Inches (30 cm).
Sow Inside: Use peat pots. Germination time: two to three weeks. Temperature 60 to 70°F (15 to 21°C). Start three months in advance. Transplant out in early spring.
Requirements: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Soil pH 6 to 7. Rich soil. Moist soil. Provide trellis.
Propagate: cuttings in the spring.

Common Questions

How many members does the Asarina genus have?

The Asarina genus contains about 12 species. They are vine plants known for their attractive, trumpet-shaped flowers.

Do members of Asarina make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Asarina plants make excellent additions to gardens and landscapes. Their climbing habit and showy flowers make them great for trellises and containers.

Which Asarina species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

Asarina scandens, or climbing snapdragon, is often grown for its vibrant, long-lasting flowers that bloom throughout summer and fall.

Are members of the Asarina plant genus fragrant?

Asarina plants are generally not known for their fragrance. They're grown more for their attractive blooms and climbing habit.

What is the perfect location to grow Asarina?

Asarina prefers full sun to partial shade and well-drained soil. Provide them a structure to climb on for the best display.

Is Asarina invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Asarina is not typically considered invasive in the USA. These plants are generally well-behaved in a garden setting.

How do I remove Asarina plants from my garden?

To remove Asarina, prune the plant back heavily or pull it down from its supporting structure. Be sure to remove all plant parts to prevent regrowth.


The Asarina genus, also known as climbing snapdragon or twining snapdragon, is part of the Plantaginaceae family. Native to Mexico and the southwestern United States, these perennial climbers are loved for their showy, snapdragon-like flowers, which appear in a variety of colors from spring to fall.

Asarina plants thrive in full sun to partial shade and require well-drained soil. These climbers are excellent for hanging baskets, containers, or trellises. While they are tender perennials, they are often grown as annuals outside their hardiness zones. Regular watering and feeding are required for these plants to thrive, and they should be protected from strong winds.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on Asarina. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Collinsia and Rhodochiton plants.