Tagged as: Vines
Vines add versatility to the home landscape, being both functional and decorative. Vines can be grown for their beautiful prolific blooms, attractive summer foliage, fall color, and interesting ornamental fruits and seedpods.
Evergreen vines placed on a north wall will insulate walls year-round helping to keep walls cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Deciduous vines (those that lose their leaves), especially those with larger leaves, provide shade in the summer and let the sun shine onto the house in winter.
Uses in the Landscape
- Add strong vertical elements to the garden
- Create privacy screens and archways
- Soften walls, fences, posts, or rock walls
- Train to shelter walkways or pergola
- Camouflage utility poles and other unsightly objects
- Act as a ground cover if left unsupported
Factors to Consider
- Match the vine to its light requirements: a sun-loving vine may grow in shade but won’t prosper
- Most vines prefer loose, moist, well-drained soils
- Avoid windy sites
- Consider the ultimate size and vigor, and choose proper support accordingly
You do not need elaborate structures to grow vines. Vines can creep along the tops of walls and fences, climb roof arbors, and twine around pillars, posts, trellises, or trees. No matter how large or small the structure, it is important that you pair the right plant with the right support to ensure the vine will attach properly and be supported by the structure over time.
Methods of Support
Many vines can be left to ramble along the ground without support, but all must have the support of another plant or a structure to grow above the surface of the ground. Before planting, it’s important to learn whether a vine clings or twines to the structure it will grow on. Make sure the support is strong enough to hold the vine year after year.
Twining vines climb by twisting their stems or leaf stalks (petioles) around a support, or with the use of tendrils, which corkscrew around their support. Twining vines grow well on trellises, arbors, wires, or chain-link fences.
Clinging or climbing vines attach themselves directly to a surface by means of holdfasts (adhesive discs) or by small aerial roots. This type works best on a rough surface, such as stone, wood, masonry walls, and tree trunks.
- Train vines to grow or adhere to supports so that their leading shoots grow upward
- Some vines may have difficulty clinging; tie them to their support
- Maintain a 2” layer of mulch to retain moisture and keep roots cool
- Vines need one inch of water per week during the growing season; supplement precipitation if necessary
Many vines have specific pruning requirements, but the following guidelines will help make vines vigorous and attractive.
- Each year remove a portion of older wood to make room for new growth
- Thin overcrowding plants to let more air and sun reach the center of the plant
- Do heavier pruning in late winter while plants are still dormant
- Prune dead, diseased, or unwanted wood back to strong buds
Caution: Clinging vines that attach with aerial roots and holdfasts can work their way into mortar cracks and can leave clinging roots on rough surfaces after the vine has been removed.
The following vines are considered weedy and invasive, and often grow out of control. They should not be considered for the home landscape:
- Ampelopsis brevipedunculata; Porcelain vine
- Celastrus orbiculata; Oriental bittersweet
- Lonicera japonica; Japanese honeysuckle
- Menispermum canadense; Moonseed
- Rhus radicans; Poison ivy
Vines for the Home Landscape
Annual vines grow quickly in one season and die after the first hard frost. Annual vines do not require heavy-duty support and rarely need pruning. Use annual vines for quick cover, as a temporary screen for an unwanted view, to add vertical height, or to add color and fragrance to the garden.
Recommended Annual Vines
Bougainvillea (Bougainvillea sp)
Hyacinth Bean (Dolichos lablab)
Sweet Potato Vine (Impomea batalas)
Morning Glory (Impomea purpurea)
Winter Jasmine (Jasminum offimale)
Annual Sweet Pea (Lathyrus odoratus)
Passion Flower (Passiflora caerulea)
Black-eyed Susan Vine (Thungerbia alata)
Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus)
- Hardy Kiwi 100%
Botanical Name: Actinidia kolomiktaCommon Name: Hardy Kiwi Updated 1/2012 Height: 15-20' Attachment: Twining stems Habit/Form: climbing vine Zone: 4-8 Cultural Requirements: Prefers part...
- American Bittersweet 100%
Botanical Name: Celastrus scandensCommon Name: American Bittersweet Reviewed 2/2012 Form Fall color Fruit Height : 30-40' Attachment: Twining stems Habit/Form: ...
- Boston-Ivy 98%
Botanical Name: Parthenocissus tricuspidataCommon Name: Boston-Ivy Updated 11/2012Click on an image to enlarge. Form Leaf Fall leaf Attachment: Clinging with holdfasts Habit/Form: Climbing...
- Virginia Creeper 98%
Botanical Name: Parthenocissus quinquefolia Common Name: Virginia Creeper* Updated 11/2012 Form Leaf Fall leaf *Given the right conditions, these vines can be aggressive and control may be...