For the landscape designer, there are some truly beautiful climbing plants to choose from that can be trained up trees, trellises or even suspended from hanging pots. Using climbing plants that extend a traditional border’s height will add structure to a garden design. However, for most of us the sight of a climbing plant, in a domestic setting, is most associated with one growing up the wall of the exterior. Indeed, an established ivy or a clematis, for instance, becomes the wall, in a visual sense.
If your home has broad expanses of wall that you find dull to look at, one of the best things you can do to add interest is to grow a climbing plant. Grow your climbing plants around window frames, doorways and garages. Annual and perennial climbing plants both do well if grown in containers, so you don’t need to worry about invasive roots causing a problem with your building’s structure. Even if you don’t want a climbing plant against your main building, planting one so that it gives a new look to a trellis or a boundary fence is an equally good idea.
Soften The Structure.
The principle idea, with all manner of climbing plants, is that they will soften the structural elements of your home. Climbing plants don’t grow in regular right angles with a consistent color. With a little movement caused by the wind, even well pruned climbing plants, which have been fixed in place by battens and wire, will make your home seem more alive.
Nothing gives a home a more established look than ivy growing up the exterior walls. Ivies come in many varieties, so you don’t need to choose one that is particularly dark, although the green will be naturally darker in places that the sun reaches less often. The advantage of ivy is that it needs very little help to become established and you often don’t need to train it at all. However, once established you will need to cut it back from time to time before it takes over.
Ever popular, roses come in many forms. If you want a rose that will cling to a wall or grow through a trellis select one that is a climbing species from your garden center. Rambling roses flower in many different colors, so you will find something to suit. Attach a batten to your wall so that the rose does not need to be positioned immediately against the surface. This will allow some air movement behind the plant which will, in turn, make it more resistant to diseases. Roses are particularly attractive, grown up home’s wall, in combination with an ivy.
Always a pleasing sight on the front of a home, wisteria is a climbing plant which sports mauve, violet or white clusters of flowers. The plant flowers in early summer and the usually impressive display is followed by attractive foliage. Wisteria is an ideal plant that can be trained to a house wall or allowed to grow through established trees.
Growing plants on the side of the home is not for everyone. If you like climbing plants but worry about them taking over the wall, or covering a window, simply plant them to grow up through a trellis. Building a trellis that connects to the rear of your home, over a decking area is a relatively simple DIY project, but you can buy purpose built trellises that will do the job, too. Along with ivy, wisteria and roses, trellises are ideal for growing other climbers such as clematis, vines and honeysuckles. If you have no room for a large trellis, why not grow a climber through a modest balustrade?