Quick growing climbing plants

Patience may be a virtue, but when it comes to garden plants, the quicker the results the better, especially if you re faced with a bare, new site.

Long-lived,fast-growing woody climbers such as Russian vine and vigorous perennial climbers such as golden hop are ideal for instant impact, to help give a new garden a lush, well-established look or to hide an unattractive shed, fence or wall.

Some quick-growing climbers are evergreen, their year-round cover being especially valuable in patio or town gardens. Deciduous climbers are leafless in winter but may have fiery autumn tints or attractive new spring growth. And both evergreen and deciduous types can have pretty flowers and/or ornamental fruits.

Quick-growing climbers range from 1.8-25m (6-S0ft) high. Many, such as common white jasmine, can be cut back hard, but try to match your choice to the space available, especially if thereare other established plants close by which are liable to be swamped by vigorous growth. Remember that rampant species can block gutters unless pruned back regu-larly. Self-clinging types, such as Virginia creeper, can also adhere to paintwork, a nuisance when it comes to maintenance.

Consider your garden’s soil and light conditions – common ivy, for example, tolerates a wide range of conditions while the trumpet creeper {Campsis rcidicans) performs well only in full sun, shelter and moist but well-drained soil.

Starting with plants

Most quick-growing climbers are available all year, container-grown and ready to plant, from garden centres. Some, such as passion flower, can be grown from seed while others, such as ornamental grape vines and honeysuckle, root well from cuttings.

Always plant climbers in weed-free, enriched soil at least 30cm (lft) away from a wall so their roots can reach moisture. Provide support, in the form of wires and vine eyes, trellis or plastic mesh netting, before the climbers need it. Self-clinging types need temporary support until they have become well established.

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