Muehlenbeckia, Creeping Wire Vine, Maidenhair Vine, Mattress Vine 'Nana'

Muehlenbeckia axillaris

Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Muehlenbeckia (mew-len-BEK-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: axillaris (ax-ILL-ar-iss) (Info)
Cultivar: Nana
Additional cultivar information:(aka Little Leaf)
Synonym:Muehlenbeckia complexa var. microphylla
Synonym:Muehlenbeckia nana
Synonym:Muehlenbeckia hypogaea
Synonym:Polygonum axillare


Alpines and Rock Gardens



Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:



under 6 in. (15 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Birmingham, Alabama

Trussville, Alabama

Chandler, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona

Clayton, California

Clovis, California(2 reports)

Cottonwood, California

East Porterville, California

Fairfield, California


Laguna Niguel, California

Porterville, California

San Diego, California

San Francisco, California

Santa Cruz, California

Vista, California(9 reports)

Salerno, Campania

Hobe Sound, Florida

Orlando, Florida

Oviedo, Florida

Decatur, Georgia

Tucker, Georgia

Plainfield, Illinois

Washington, Illinois

Greenville, Indiana

Coralville, Iowa

Roslindale, Massachusetts

Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts

Madison, Mississippi(2 reports)

Munsonville, New Hampshire

Kure Beach, North Carolina

Portland, Oregon

Scio, Oregon

Sherwood, Oregon

Altoona, Pennsylvania

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Okatie, South Carolina

Christiana, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Fate, Texas

Lubbock, Texas

Richmond, Texas

Salt Lake City, Utah

Newport News, Virginia

Airway Heights, Washington

Felida, Washington

Kent, Washington

Lynnwood, Washington

Olympia, Washington

Ogdensburg, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 18, 2021, Cindy6614 from Tucker, GA wrote:

I love it in pots. It adapts to low light conditions without fizzling out but of course grows much thicker and stronger in sun.
It adds a very delicate touch to outdoor pots with taller 'thrills' don't don't spill.
It has not been invasive for me but I am going to put it in the ground in the sun soon and watch the outcome. I'm in Tucker GA zone 7 (7b) My main desire for it is only in potting because it is a beautiful easy plant and always gives the right touch to almost any arrangement.


On Sep 8, 2020, Ckamsler from Westlake Village, CA wrote:

I live in Southern California and this plant is spreading like wildfire all over my other plants. It's also grown really tall and bushy (about 2 ft high) and I'd love to trim it back properly. My gardener just weed wacked part of it and it look terrible. Any suggestions?


On Apr 30, 2020, Teravi from Felida, WA wrote:

Research, read the negative reviews here, and avoid this ground cover! Nurseries should provide a warning on tags. A very similar Muehlenbeckia is listed on the Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board-- MONITOR LIST. I've been trying for two years now to eradicate it. If anyone has been successful, PLEASE message me.


On Apr 5, 2016, moo2 from San Francisco, CA wrote:

The Creeping Wire Vine creeped on over from some neighbor's yard and it has taken over the back fence as well as next door neighbors' fences. When it first arrived, the little round leaves looked so pretty. A neighbor was removing it from his side but I left the ones in my yard alone. That was not a good choice to make. It took over quickly growing into a thick thatch, and it's a pain to remove with all the wiry twisting vines. It has also climbed up the fence and taken hold in the trees in the yard on the other side of our back fence. I've hacked 60% of it away every 2 years, but that was only the part above ground. So if you are in San Francisco, don't plant it!


On Aug 13, 2015, DuJour from Santa Cruz, CA wrote:

The plant is pure evil. It looks great and makes for nice ground cover, plus it doesn't take any effort for it to thrive ... which is precisely why it's evil. It grows beyond control and never dies. It would survive a nuclear winter. But the biggest problem is it will grow inside the walls of your house and come out your roof and through any crack in foundation or walls. And at that point it's very difficult to remove it from under your foundation. And to compound the problem, it's tough as leather so your hands typically won't be good enough to tear it out. So then you try digging it out, but it's so pervasive and spreads so rapidly and readily, that you can't get everywhere it goes (like under the foundation). So then you try Roundup, and after three treatments, it still comes back like ... read more


On Jul 29, 2015, AndrewJBBlacka from Salt Lake City, UT wrote:

I recently saw this plant in a planter at a friends house here in Salt Lake City, and he couldn't remember the name so i (googled) and identified it.

I had been looking for something just like this to plant around the base of my pond/fountain and flagstone walkway. I planted four Wirevine plants in a cool dry part sun exposure, about 2' apart early this spring and so far so good, not much growth yet, but as this is their first season i don't expect much.

They get about 6 hours of direct sunlight a day, over-sprayed and watered by hand every other day/daily until established. As I live in the Mountainous Salt Lake City with temperamental weather it hasn't succumbed to heat or lack of water during my vacations so far this summer.

I am going to ... read more


On Sep 19, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

A neighbor has grown this plant for at least 5 years in part sun, with no irrigation. It's formed a patch about a yard across, next to some thyme which it doesn't seem to want to invade. I find it attractive, and it doesn't seem to want to spread inordinately. It's hardy but tardily deciduous here (Boston Z6a).


On Jun 23, 2014, Sitebeautician from Atlanta, GA wrote:

Planted one 4" pot last fall in heavy clay, on south facing slope and without irrigation. Plant has spread approximately 12" and seems promising as a substitute for workhorse ground covers here I the South. Clay soil may limit rapid expansion experienced in areas with loamy or sandy soils.


On Mar 16, 2014, carolynsuetoo from Porterville, CA wrote:

A friend gave me this plant as a small topiary. It grew and I set it outside in a fairly shaded area moist area. It grew out of its pot with beautiful cascading vines in multi-directions. I pruned it one day, thought I had ruined it, but it filled back in. I can start new plants easily from trimmings and planting in similar locations. I live in Porterville, CA, zone 9, so frosty for weeks in winter and a scorching 105+ days for weeks in the summer. It loves a semi-shaded area with plenty of moisture. It is the most attractive plant in my yard. I love this little plant with its thriving disposition!


On Oct 7, 2012, mdmetcalf from Salt Lake City, UT wrote:

I'm in Salt Lake City, Utah, zone 6. It hasn't been invasive, I was afraid it wouldn't come back, but it did. It was on the north side of my house, not much water, no sun in the winter and it did very well until the ducks started picking at it. So I planted some in the sun in July, full sun, 100 degrees, dumb time to plant it, it barely survived, but did.
I wish it stayed green all winter.


On Jun 12, 2012, vinobarolo from San Francisco, CA wrote:

I have experienced the serious invasive habit of this plant. It has taken over several neighbors' yards - all elderly folk who do little if any maintenance in their yards - and I constantly fight it's entrance into my back yard. It travels through and under fences, climbs trees and bushes and suffocates them. It is extremely difficult to remove as the runners travel quite deep, and the vine itself is very wiry and difficult to cut.


On Apr 21, 2012, woodenshoe62 from Ogdensburg, WI (Zone 4a) wrote:

We live in zone 4 and I could not let this beautiful plant freeze. So I brought it in and set it on a bench in our entrance on the north side of the house. It got quite cool out there at times and only bright light, no sunshine, but looks like the day I brought it in. Now I want to transplant it in something larger and put it outside when the weather warms.What kind of soil should I plant it in?


On Feb 4, 2011, pacactusfan from Altoona, PA wrote:

I have tried this plant as an experimental in my garden. It has not spread as much as those have reported in warmer climates, but it does return faithfully year after year. The spot it is growing in receives very bright light, but not direct sun. I also grow it in pots which I over winter in my greenhouse. It does just fine in the greenhouse.


On Sep 30, 2010, mytopiary from Lynnwood, WA wrote:

One small plant has spread to 30" x 48" in an area with only three or four hours afternoon sun daily. It's been a moderate grower....took three years to achieve this size. Frost and prolonged freezing in the teens turn the leaves black but the plant fully rebounds in the spring. Be patient. It's also done well and grown rapidly in pots with premium soil in full sun. Needs plenty of water.


On Jan 26, 2010, killdawabbit from Christiana, TN (Zone 6b) wrote:

Until I read the description of Muehlenbeckia axillaris I thought that's what I had. It was labeled that way. It must be 'nana' though because it is a very small, low creeper. It's beautiful. It has survived two winters here in zone 6b so far.


On Nov 18, 2009, sueroderus from Bluffton, SC (Zone 8b) wrote:

(zone 8b) This plant has not been invasive for me although it does spread. It has done well in shaded areas in my clay soil, but has not done well in sun. It's light airy texture has been a good addition to my garden and great addition to planters.


On Jul 21, 2009, flaflwrgrl from Allthingsplants, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I had to vote negative to let people know this plant can be your worst invasive nightmare. I got 2 little 4" pots of this, planted them in the driest place in my yard (in sand), full sun for 8-10 hours a day. I pretty much ignored them, that is to say that after the 1st 2 weeks I didn't water them or anything & we were in horrible drought conditions. In 1 1/2 years they had covered an area approx. 14' x 16' & I had been trying to keep them trimmed back so they wouldn't crawl into everything else. They crawled over & under & through everything in their path rooting their thin stems all along the way. They were a BEAST to get rid of. I had to spray them but where they went into my juniper I had to pull & pull & pull & still have to keep a close watch for pop ups. That is what this plant can ... read more


On Jan 10, 2009, moonmoth from Scio, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

Maidenhair Vine is lovely in a large pot on a stand, which allows the vines to grow down the sides of the pot and lower.
I cut off stems, (woody) and stuck them in moist soil; even without hormone powder and the stems survived.
Maidenhair Vine is cold hardy, and seems to be evergreen as the leaves are still on my plant.
I would highly recommend it as a plant which adds interest and
texture in a porch setting.


On May 19, 2007, gymcorridor from Orlando, FL wrote:

great for rock gardens