Climbing plants can be not only beautiful but impressive as well. A tall, cascading bounty of flowers always warrants a double-take by passersby. Climbing plants add height to areas and can help to create a visual wonderland in your garden.
Strategically planted climbers will draw attention to the height of the garden first. The eyes will then slowly be drawn down to the plants of medium height. The wandering eye of the human will continue to be drawn down to the shorter plants. The beauty of a garden with climbers is that the flowers are not only at the top of the plant but cover it equally. This provides for an absolute feast for the eyes.
How To Prune Climbing Plants
Pruning is an important job when dealing with climbing plants. The gardener must first determine the boundaries in which the plant should grow. Overgrown plants can make your entire home look unkempt. Proper pruning can make all the difference in the world.
Start with clean and sharp pruning shears. When pruning, it is of the utmost importance that the gardener make clean cuts. Jagged cuts can jeopardize the health of the plant. Wound dressing is not needed and should not be applied unless you are pruning an Oak Tree in the Texas area. Be sure to trim out any dead areas as that will promote growth and more blooms.
How to Trellis Climbing Plants
Many people think that training a plant to a trellis is difficult, when it truly isn’t that hard. The key to trellising is consistency. The gardener must check on trellised plant at least twice per week. Tucking the new shoots through the trellis will keep your plants looking neat and well-maintained. Wrapping the shoots on the trellis will keep your plants looking beautiful.
Creating Shade With Climbing Plants
Climbing plants can provide as much shade as most massive trees, if done correctly. Using a pergola as a climbing tool, any gardener can achieve shade with the proper plants. Depending upon your zone, you can have your pergola covered with roses, mandevilla, shell plants or a wide variety of vines. Flower covered pergolas can truly be magnificent shade providers as well as pieces of art. The key is to select the vines that will grow and survive in your area.
Creating Privacy Fences With Climbing Plants
The old saying is that good fences make for good neighbors. That is quite true but fences can be natural and pretty as well. Depending upon the growing zone that you live in, certain plants can be attractive and effective borders for your property.
An existing fence is the perfect material for climbers to attach and grow. Most varieties of ivy are quick growing and will encompass the fence in a few short years. Roses take longer to establish and cover the fence completely. However, the visual effect of a rose covered fence is second to none.
The gardener should check on the plantings twice weekly. During these examinations, any new shoots should be attached to the fence to encourage proper climbing. With care and attention, the fence will eventually be sporting a host of blooms and greenery.
Vertical gardening can add interest to otherwise bleak and boring parts of a yard. It is also the perfect way to garden for those with a small outdoor space. An unappealing wall can be transformed into a living masterpiece. There are numerous plants and vines that will thrive in your vertical garden. It is important for the gardener to select ones that are recommended for that growing zone.
Many people don’t realize that vegetables are perfect for vertical gardens. Climbing veggies can grow quite tall and not only beautify your space but provide you with delicious, fresh food all summer long. Beans, cucumbers and peas are great climbers and are easy to grow. An interesting thing to do with your garden area is to grow corn and beans together. Native Americans used this technique many years ago. Because the corn grows so high, the beans use the stalks as natural trellises. Beans produce nitrate in the soil which will make all of your plants healthier and more productive.
Want to learn more about plants that climb?
Check out these websites for more information:
Vines: Creating a Living Screen by University of Minnesota Extension
Vertical Gardening by Washington State University Extension
Pruning Techniques by Texas AgriLife Extension Service