“Balloon vine” spreads out quickly, with white flowers and odd sacks





Another fast and cheap climbing vine is called “balloon vine” (fusenkazura) in Japanese. I love how it spreads out, attaches to the rope, and offers white flowers and odd sacks.


  1. J, I love reading about your balcony every year and especially about the green curtain– after all, who doesn’t love green sacs? I live in the southeastern united states, and I think a lot of the plants you grow could be found and grown here. Which of your plants have you found to be the most fun and resilient– something you would seek out repeatedly? Speaking of those (or, well, perennials…) do you have any idea what the scientific name is for the Okinawan morning glory? I can’t find it and love seeing those shots when you post them.

    1. Thanks, Taikoboy. I bet you’re right that the US southeast climate is similar to Tokyo. I love the Okinawa morning glory as a potted plant, but I’d be careful about planting it in the ground since it could take over. It’s also called Ryukyu morning glory. Compared to Edo or Tokyo morning glory vines, the Okinawa one is perennial and only comes in a solid blue color. The Edo ones are annuals, more delicate, more colors, and often the flower edge is white. I also like camellia for winter flowers; it’s also very Japanese. This summer I’m growing a banana tree. Have you ever grown one?

  2. Thank you, J.

    I’ve never tried banana. Or fig– your fig is so cute. I love the red lines you highlighted on the banana leaves recently.

    It didn’t even dawn on me to think of camellia for containers– I’m hoping to add some to my in-ground garden, though, for evergreen and winter flowering interest. I’m really excited to try star jasmine (probably potted– I think in line with your caution with the morning glory) for a green curtain type area I want to cultivate on my own porch; it’s usually evergreen and perennial here but would be easy enough to overwinter indoors until it’s sprawling. Is that something you’ve tried for yours?

    I’ve been inspired by the pots you’ve made at kuge crafts to gather an eclectic group of air plants. I’m not sure where I imagine keeping them. I used to keep some in a palludarium, which was great because I could just dunk them in the water or let them float around for awhile, but I really like their potential to work with small quirky containers.

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