Some friends have recently taken on a new property in South-East England which includes, among other things, a greenhouse in poor condition filled mostly by a mature and well-trained vine.

Another plant is growing enthusiastically, with thin but fairly rigid stalks bearing long pods with a distinctive calyx (?). My first thought was a wisteria of some sort, but I'd be interested in any suggestions.

Unidentified pods

This previous answer suggests that it might possibly be a catalpa, but the various photos I see lack the distinctive bell around the stalk. Tree with long seed pods

My apologies for the quality of the photo, but conditions weren't good and since we've just had a hard frost it's unlikely that I'll be able to get a better one.

1 Answer 1


As a working hypothesis, it's a Campsis- possibly a variety of Campsis grandiflora but the proof will come next year.

In any event, I think quite a lot needs to be cut back in order to get some idea of the work (and cost!) needed to replace the top part of that greenhouse preferably without damaging the vine and anything else of value in it.

  • I agree that Campsis seems a likely , so I wouldn't worry about damaging the vine - I don't believe that it's possible to kill a campsis without using chemicals (Campsis radicans is an invasive species where I live). It's more than likely that there are many seedlings in the surrounding area; if so (and the OP will know next year), then the OP could kill the vine to preserve the greenhouse and transplant one or more seedlings to a more desirable spot.
    – Jurp
    Commented Dec 13, 2022 at 21:35
  • Note that question was answered by OP :-) Greenhouse is in bad condition. It's now in the hands of friends, but the previous owners had "fallen out of love" with the property and... well, you ought to see the state of the cordon-trained apples. I'll try to post a photo when it's in flower... provided that it survives the frosts we've had over the last few nights which have been the worst for 20 years. Obviously we're all keen to propagate anything that might at one time have been a cherished specimen. Commented Dec 14, 2022 at 21:40

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