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Petrea volubilis

Family Name: Verbenaceae
Common Name: Sandpaper Vine, Queen's Wreath, Purple Wreath, Sandpaper

The Sandpaper Vine (Petrea volubilis) have attractive pale blue to violet, star-shaped flowers which drape down from the woody climber. Although the flowers are short-lived, the secret to its beauty lies in the long lasting petal-like, violet calyces which persist even after the flowers have fallen. The vine’s rough textured leaves resemble sandpaper, giving it the common name Sandpaper Vine.

Full Sun: 6-8h Semi-Shade Moderate Water Ornamental Flowers Climber, Vine and Liana Woody


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Common Names
Species Summary

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Climber, Vine & Liana, Shrub (Woody)
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic


Native Distribution Tropical America
Native Habitat Terrestrial
Local Conservation Status 1 Exotic (Horticultural / Cultivated Only)

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form A woody climber, it has a twining growth form and can grow up to 6m in height with the aid of support. The plant forms a shrub when not supported.  
Foliage The evergreen leaves are simple, arranged in whorls and are ovate-elliptic to elliptical in shape. The upper surface of the leaves has a rough texture. 
Flowers The flowers are borne on arching racemes, up to 30cm long. The star-shaped flowers are pale blue to violet and have conspicuous, slender calyx lobes which are of a lighter shade as compared to the flowers. The calyx persists on the plant after the flowers have dropped, gradually drying up and turning brown.  
Similar Similar to Petrea rugosa. P. rugosa has wrinkled leaves and smaller flowers, with shorter petals and calyces.
Etymology The genus Petrea is named after Robert James Petre , the patron of botany. The specific epithet volubilis means entwinning.
Ethnobotanical Uses Cultural / Religious ( According to indigeneous legends, flowers of P. volubilis were said to be used in folk medicine by the Caribs. )

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Moist Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Fertile Loamy Soils
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Trellis / Arbour / Pergola

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Semi-Shade, Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting (Hardwood)


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Rough
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Whorled
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire - Wavy / Undulate

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower Colour(s) Purple, Blue
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Terminal
Flower Symmetry Radial

Image Repository



Master ID 175
Species ID 1471
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 20 April 2020.