En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?


Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - May 24, 2014

From: San Diego, CA
Region: California
Topic: Vines
Title: Vine for yard with morning sun in California
Answered by: Nan Hampton


Hi, What is a good perennial vine to grow on the front of our house? We would like a fragrant flower too. It will be on a wood support beam, helping cover some pipes we have there. It will be an east facing vine, thus only sun in the morning until noonish. Thanks.


Here are some candidate native California vines that grow in or very near San Diego County.  They are all perennials, most have fragrant flowers and two of them have edible fruit.  The first three will grow in sun and part shade.  The grapes prefer full sun but if your area has close to 6 hours of sun, that will probably be adequate.

Clematis lasiantha (Pipestem clematis)  Here is more information from The Watershed Nursery.

Clematis ligusticifolia (Western white clematis) Here is more information from Yerba Buena Nursery which says that it is fragrant.

Lonicera hispidula (Pink honeysuckle)  Here is more information from Las Piliatas Nursery and Mostly Natives Nursery who say that it is fragrant.

Vitis californica (California grape) has fragrant flowers and makes edible fruit.  Here is more information from Las Pilitas Nursery and from Sonoma County Master Gardeners.

Vitis girdiana (Desert wild grape) also has fragrant flowers and makes edible fruit.  Here is more information from Las Pilitas Nursery and Theodore Payne Foundation.


From the Image Gallery

Pipestem clematis
Clematis lasiantha

Western white clematis
Clematis ligusticifolia

Pink honeysuckle
Lonicera hispidula

Desert wild grape
Vitis girdiana

More Vines Questions

Flowering vine in Tennessee
September 01, 2009 - I'm in Memphis, TN & have a flowering vine growing wild behind my A/C unit. Not the sort of vine that twines. Small blue flowers bloom out of pods; flowers only have two petals. Blooms last only one...
view the full question and answer

Identification of a vine in El Paso, Texas
November 23, 2012 - I live in Del Rio Texas - Zone 8/9 and I have a vine which can't be identified. It looks like a morning glory white flower with crimson throat, but the leaf pattern is like a 5-7 fingered hand with d...
view the full question and answer

Identity of milkweed vine with smooth seedpod
November 23, 2012 - I believe the vine I am curious about may be Matelea reticulata. However, most of the pictures I have seen of that vine show bumps on the exterior of the seed pod, and the pod I have is green and smo...
view the full question and answer

Vines to Cover Brush Pile in Maryland
April 29, 2013 - We have a large brush pile on our property that we'd intended to burn, but it is big enough now that it would require the help of the fire department! I'm thinking I'd like to cover it with native ...
view the full question and answer

Vine for Patio Wall in D.C.
June 03, 2013 - I have a concrete patio wall 4 feet tall and 9 feet long in Washington, D.C. The wall runs east to west and there is a patio above it. I am looking for vines to cover it so that I would not have to lo...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center