Kintzley’s Ghost Honeysuckle: a honey of a climber

Continuing along with the thread “instead of that ol’ plant try this! (new and better plant)”, I’d like you to seek and find and plant the fantastic Kintzley’s Ghost Honeysuckle. It’s show stopping appearance demands a double take. What is that? Eucalyptus? As a vine?

From the files of Plant Select ((TM):

Relatively new Kintzley’s GhostTM Honeysuckle (Lonicera reticulata, L. prolifera)-

This stunning ornamental vine caught the eye of Scott Skogerboe (Fort Collins Wholesale Nursery) in 2001 while driving down a side street in old town Ft. Collins. At first glance it looked like a Silver Dollar Eucalyptus because it was covered abundantly with silver-dollar sized white disks. He slammed on his brakes in order to get a closer look. Fascinated and curious, he went to the door and an elderly gentleman answered and told the tale of this unusual beauty. He said it was a family heirloom. In the 1880’s, the man’s grandfather, William “Ped” Kintzley, had worked in the greenhouses at Iowa State University (then college) and found this unusual form. He propagated it himself, and over the years, gave plants as gifts to members of the Kintzley clan throughout the country.

The vine was discovered to be an improved selection of the species.
Although the showy, tubular yellow flowers aren’t fragrant, they cover the vine in June. Each flower is surrounded by a large perfectly circular pure white bract. Amazingly, this bract holds its color throughout the summer into the fall before eventually fading.

Other than to the Kintzley family, this plant is new to the world of horticulture, and it is sure to be a winner.

From me: as if the eerie, ghostly white bracts aren’t enough, little orange red berries appear in the very center of each bract come autumn. The vine leafs out early in the spring. And maybe best of all? Kintzley’s Ghost in not, I repeat, NOT prone to aphid infestations as are the other honeysuckle vines you are familiar with: lonicera sempervirens (Coral honeysuckle, trumpet honeysuckle and woodbine).

Specs: 10-20 feet in height, 2-5 feet wide, zones 4-8, good to 8000 feet in elevation, slight fragrance, no aphids, somewhat drought tolerant after first two good growing seasons, showy in an “evening” garden.  PLANT SELECT AWARD 2006. Full sun/part shade. While vigorous, it is not unwieldy.

4 thoughts on “Kintzley’s Ghost Honeysuckle: a honey of a climber”

  1. Sounds great! I’ve been thinking about a honeysuckle but I had such problems with them and aphids when I lived in Portland that I haven’t introduced one to my garden here. Do you know where Kintzley’s Ghost Honeysuckle can be found in our area?

  2. Hi there! I’ve seen them at Edwards (where I got mine last year) and at Far West. I think they had them at Greenhurst as well, but call and double check before you drive out there. Franz may have them too, but I didn’t check . The color on this vine is just ethereal. Hope you like it.

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