Brugmansia in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Brugmansia blooming (photo credit: Kathy Diemer)

Although she is now snug as a “brug”, dozing contentedly in my insulated garage, not long ago this lady would have knocked your socks off.  As a confessed killer of many tender plants, I hesitated before purchasing this stunning specimen.  Well, for a few seconds anyway.  Lucky for me, she had the most showy display of variegated leaves I had ever seen.  I couldn’t resist . . . and I’m glad I didn’t!

Right about now, we’re all suffering from plant withdrawal as our gardens have gone into winter mode.  We’re lusting for some signs of life, a touch of green, a whiff of fragrance.  However, the best I can do at this time is to stimulate your imagination with images and descriptions of the luscious tropical beauty that graced my deck with her enormous peach blossoms this summer.

Fragrant Brugmansia blooms in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Fragrant Brugmansia blooms (photo credit: Kathy Diemer)

Brugmansia ‘Miner’s Claim’, a relatively new introduction in the world of angel’s trumpets, is native to tropical regions around the world (Africa, Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, to name a few).  Hardy in zones far from here, 9 – 11, they like warm days in the 8Oo’s, and cooler nights to rest.  Lady Brug is a heavy drinker; in a good sized container, I have to water twice a day.  And she lets me know when I’m running late-a real drama queen-as she sprawls out in her pot ’til I give her a generous dousing.  Brugmansia will tolerate full sun, but prefers a bit of shade, especially from brutally hot late day sun.

A Fragrant Spot in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

A Fragrant Spot (photo credit: Kathy Diemer)

Flowering with pendulous, intoxicatingly fragrant blooms that come in an array of whites, yellows, pinks, oranges and reds; this plant is a guaranteed show stopper.  Most fragrant in the evening (make sure your seat is nearby), it attracts moths and hummingbirds with its exotic scent.  And, with regular (once a week) fertilizing, brugmansia will bloom through the summer.  If grown in a container, it will usually stay under 8′ (mine was about 4′), but if planted in the ground, can grow quite sizable (in warmer climates, over 15′).

Brugmansia 'Miner's Claim' flower in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Brugmansia ‘Miner’s Claim’ flower (photo credit: Kathy Diemer)

Plant phenomenon and friend, Tovah Martin (, reminded me of the plants toxic potential, which is a major consideration if you have pets or children that might be tempted to chomp on a leaf.  Evidentally, it is poisonous, and a dangerous hallucinogen if any of the plant is consumed.  On the plus side, it effectively repels garden pests-deer and other critters know better than to gnaw on its limbs.  So use care, but think about a brugmansia if you have a situation where it could be enjoyed.  In the meantime, I’ll try to keep mine going for this summer!


  1. Be still my heart! I have had no luck with getting variegated Brugs to bloom in the past. Come spring I’ll have to get my hands on one of these. I just posted the link to this blog on a tropical plant nut friend’s Facebook wall. Hope she comes by to take a peek.

    • Good luck, Sue! With ample watering and weekly fertilizing, I’m sure you’ll get blooms. And thanks for passing it on . . .

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