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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.

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

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Thursday - June 14, 2007

From: San Luis Obispo, CA
Region: California
Topic: Vines
Title: Native, non-invasive vines for wall cover in California
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live on the Central Coast in California. I have a stucco garage wall, which receives full sun, and faces West. I would like to plant a climbing vine to cover the wall, and was considering a climbing fig or Boston Ivy until reading of problems with their invasive/ destructive nature. Do you have any suggestions?

ANSWER:

Congratulations for your choice of natives over invasives! Here are several native alternatives to the invasives you named:


Lathyrus splendens (pride of California)

Lathyrus vestitus (Pacific pea)

Lonicera ciliosa (orange honeysuckle)

Lonicera hispidula (pink honeysuckle)

Marah fabaceus (California manroot)

Parthenocissus vitacea (Woodbine)

Rubus leucodermis (whitebark raspberry)

Rubus ursinus (California blackberry)

Vitis californica (California wild grape) (There is also a variety of this plant called "Roger's Red" that has showy red fall leaves.)


If you visit the Theodore Payne Foundation California Native Plant Library and choose by "Type" you can see more information about some of these and other native vines for California.


Lathyrus splendens

Lonicera ciliosa

Lonicera hispidula

Marah fabaceus

 

 

 

 

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