Grow Muehlenbeckia Complexa Indoors (Angel Vine, Maidenhair Vine)

Whether you train Muehlenbeckia complexa on a trellis, or allow it to trail, you’ll love easy-care Angel Vine as a houseplant. In this guide, you’ll discover when to water, fertilize and repot, plus how to control this vigorous vine indoors.

Adaptable Angel Vine offers a lot of ways to display it. Photo © Ji Chen

Get to Know Muehlenbeckia Complexa

Angel Vine is a sprawling evergreen shrub with long, wiry stems, densely covered by small, round leaves. Its growing habit makes it a versatile plant indoors. To show off its thickly leafed vines, put this trailing vine in a hanging basket.

Better yet, you can train its climbing stems around a trellis or topiary. Tie it loosely to a support with florist’s wire and Angel Vine will take on any shape you want.

Will it flower? Yes, it does bloom if given enough sunlight. Tiny, whitish clusters of flowers grow in the axils of the leaves, in spring or summer. Don’t expect to see them on a plant grown indoors. They’re not showy anyway.

How big does it get? You can expect your houseplant to reach a height of up to 8-inches (20 cm); but it may trail or sprawl about 2-3 ft (60-91 cm) if not cut back.

Prune it back. Muehlenbeckia complexa is fast-growing and needs some help from you to shape it or train it. Prune off new stems regularly to encourage branching and to shape them as they grow. Pruning up to one-third in spring will keep the plant compact.

Repot in spring every 2 years, moving to a pot 1 size larger or keep it in the same pot and just give it fresh potting mix. Use a pot with drainage holes to prevent the potting medium from getting soggy. 

Know Thy Plant

This New Zealand native is a perennial from the Polygonaceae family. 

Muehlenbeckia is a genus of about 15 species. It was named after Henry Gustave Muehlenbeck, a physician and botanist who lived in France (1798-1845). Source: The Encyclopedia of House Plants.

Buy Angel Vine Plant

Muehlenbeckia complexa is gaining popularity as a houseplant, and it’s easy to see why. Easy to grow and low-cost, Angel Vine is a must-have for your houseplant collection.

If you can’t find it at your local garden center, you’ll find it for sale online.

Indoor Muehlenbeckia Complexa Care Tips

Light: Partial sun to full, direct sunlight. If your plant has few leaves, it needs brighter light. If you don’t have a sunny window, move the plant to a porch or patio for the summer; just be sure to bring it back indoors when the temperature drops in autumn. Or use a grow light.

Water: Water thoroughly when potting mix is dry 1 inch down. Water less in winter, allowing the top 1/3 of the potting medium to dry out before watering again. Soggy soil will cause the leaves to turn yellow.

Humidity: Average room (around 40% relative humidity) 

Temperature: Keep warm (65-80°F/18-27°C) year-round. Avoid exposing plant to temperature extremes, including cold drafts from doors and windows or blasts from heat/AC vents. 

Soil: Use a good-quality, all-purpose potting mix. Commercial mixes have no soil in them at all, making them lightweight and fast-draining — just right for this shrub.

Fertilizer: Muehlenbeckia complexa is not a heavy feeder. Fertilize once a month spring through fall with a balanced water-soluble fertilizer at half the recommended amount. Stop feeding in winter, when growth is slower.

Propagation: Take 3-4 inch stem tip cuttings in spring and root in perlite or fresh potting mix. Use rooting hormone powder to ensure the stems will quickly develop roots.

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