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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Climbers and Wall Shrubs

Clematis is a treasure among climbers, with its glorious blooms, wonderful range of colours and long flowering period.


Climbers are long-lived plants, with a lot of growing to do, so it pays to give them a good start. First of all, you must choose a healthy plant. Sturdy stems are a good sign but most important of all are the roots. Tip the post and check the drainage holes. Reject any with a mass of roots, but those with just a few roots emerging are at exactly the right stage for planting.

Climbing plants are invaluable for giving the garden a well-furnished, finished look. They can hide an ugly wall, a dilapidated shed beautifully!

Some climbers, such as ivy and Hydrangea petiolaris are self-supporting, attaching themselves by little aerial roots, and need no help to scale a wall. Most Virginia creepers have special sucker pads on their tendrils. But the twiners(honeysuckle, clementis, wisteria, and the like) must have something to hang on to.

Picture of Hydrangea petiolaris

Caring of Climbers
Watering: Climbers on walls or near trees need extra water in warm, dry weather, even when they are well established.

Feeding: A spring feeding of rose fertilizer gives all climbers and wall shrubs an annual boost. At the same time, mulch with a layer of well-rotted manure or compost to improve the soil, lock in moisture, and keep the weeds down.

Pruning: To keep plants within bounds, and to create a good shape, some pruning is inevitable. LIght pruning can be done at any time during the growing season, to any climber or wall shrub, but pruning differ from plants to plants.

Picture of honeysuckle



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