Tecoma stans GOLD STAR
Common Name: yellow bells
Type: Broadleaf evergreen
Family: Bignoniaceae
Zone: 9 to 11
Height: 3.00 to 5.00 feet
Spread: 2.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to frost
Bloom Description: Yellow
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Annual
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Leaf: Evergreen
Attracts: Butterflies


Winter hardy to USDA Zones 9-11. In St. Louis, plants should be grown in the ground as annuals or in pots/containers that may be overwintered indoors. Plants need well-drained soils in full sun. Although established plants in the wild tolerate dry soils, container plants and new plantings need regular moisture. Deadhead flowers to prolong bloom. Remove seed pods to encourage rebloom.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Tecoma stans is native from southern Texas, New Mexico and Arizona to Central America, South America and parts of the Caribbean. It is a broadleaf evergreen shrub or small tree that grows from 10’ to 25’ tall and features a lengthy bloom of bright yellow tubular flowers. GOLD STAR is a cultivar that was discovered growing in a garden in San Antonio, Texas. It is noted for having earlier and larger blooms than native Texas plants. It is typically sold by nurseries in the St. Louis area as a container plant for patios in somewhat the same manner as Mandevilla and Bougainvillea. In containers or as an annual, GOLD STAR typically grows 3-4’ tall. It features odd pinnate medium green leaves with ovate-oblong toothed leaflets (2-4” long). Trumpet-shaped bright yellow flowers (to 2” long) in axillary and terminal racemes bloom continuously from late spring to frost. Flowers are slightly fragrant. Flowers are followed by narrow bean-like capsules (to 8” long) that are filled with papery-winged seeds. Common names for Tecoma stans plants include trumpet bush, esperanza (Spanish for hope), yellow elder, yellow bells or yellow bignonia.


No serious insect or disease problems. Watch for spider mites and whiteflies on indoor plants.

Garden Uses

For the St. Louis area, grow in containers as patio plants that are overwintered indoors. In southern Florida and California, this may be planted as a specimen or massed in gardens and shrub borders or grown in containers.