Leatherflower, described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753, is a belle of the Southeast. This slender, herbaceous perennial vine is valued for its sheer delicate beauty. The nodding, reddish-purple, bell-shaped flowers are thickly textured and the rosy, recurved petals are cream-colored at the tips and inside. But they do more — the flowers attract hummingbirds, bees and butterflies and then mature to become beautiful, dramatic seed heads for birds to enjoy. In nature, it grows along wood edges and stream banks under tree canopies from Pennsylvania to Missouri and south to Georgia and Mississippi. In the garden, it climbs – by tendrils – to a mere 10 to 12 ft in bright shade with average soil moisture, adaptable and easy to grow. Any stems remaining from the previous season can be cut to the ground, as all the flowering will come on the new growth in late spring and summer. The achenes with their feathery tails extend the attractiveness of the vine into the fall.