Botanical name: Aristolochia elegans Family: Aristolochiaceae (Birthwort family)
Native to South America, Calico flower is a tender evergreen vine with very unusual flowers. Leaves are beautiful, bright green heart shaped. These are about 3 in long by 2 in wide and grow closely together to create a dense mass of foliage. Slender woody stems twine gracefully in tight coils around any support, growing to heights of 10-15 ft. In summer the vine produces abundance of 3 in flowers scattered among the drooping leaves. The greenish-white flowers have a s-shaped tube that is flared at the mouth that resembles a 19th century Dutch pipe. Species of Aristolochia are generically called pipe vines or Dutchman's pipes for this reason. The inner portion surface of the mouth of the "pipe" is covered with a purplish-brown pattern that is reminiscent of calico fabric which inspire this species common name "calico flower".
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