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?

Share

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
1 rating

Tuesday - June 24, 2008

From: Cushing, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Non-Natives, Vines
Title: Non-blooming wisteria in Oklahoma
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a wisteria bush that doesn't bloom. It's two years old. What should I do?

ANSWER:

There is one wisteria native to North America, Wisteria frutescens (American wisteria), grown mostly in the South. It is less aggressive than similar Asian species. The wisterias typically planted in home gardens are Wisteria sinensis, or Chinese wisteria, and Wisteria floribunda, Japanese wisteria. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, propagation and protection of plants native to North America. They are better for the environment, as they use less fertilizer, water and maintenance. However, the care for the plants are about the same, so we will see what kind of help we can give you.

Here is an excellent article from Ohio State University Extension on Growing Wisteria. To address your question on blooming of the wisteria, plants that are grown from seed remain in a long juvenile period and often do not bloom for ten to fifteen years, sometimes longer. Plants that are grafted or grown from cuttings may bloom earlier than seedlings. Chinese wisteria may bloom three to four years after planting; however, the juvenile period may be much longer. The short answer is that your plant is probably not old enough to bloom, yet and may not be old enough for years. In order to bloom well, the plant will need at least 6 hours daily of direct sunlight. The Asian species get HUGE, up to 65 feet tall, and can take over an area, or climb a tree and smother it. The vines are very heavy and need major support.

Now that we've talked about the blooming, maybe you might consider whether you really want to keep this garage-eater. Read this article by the Plant Conservation Alliance on "Least Wanted" Exotic Wisteria. Here are some native alternatives to Asian wisterias, all native to North America and all found in Oklahoma:

Wisteria frutescens (American wisteria)

Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper)

Lonicera sempervirens (trumpet honeysuckle)

Bignonia capreolata (crossvine)


Wisteria frutescens

Campsis radicans

Lonicera sempervirens

Bignonia capreolata

 

 

 

 

More Vines Questions

Vine to cover pile of tree limbs
August 13, 2013 - I have a pile of tree limbs in my yard. I'd like to find a (flowering or not) vine type plant native to the Austin TX area that will eventually grow all over and cover this pile. Thanks for any sug...
view the full question and answer

Vine for a trellis in Illinois
June 21, 2008 - I live in Nortrhern Illinois and am trying to keep my garden as native as possible. I would like to grow something on a trellis in part sun. It looks like a regional clematis is a possibility, but d...
view the full question and answer

Folsom CA Wall-cover
April 13, 2012 - I live in Folsom, CA and I have an ugly cinder block wall that I want to cover, I want something that is low maintenance and that is going to grow and spread into my grass. The only one i can really t...
view the full question and answer

Need a vine to cover a 8' cinder block wall in Fullerton, CA.
August 23, 2010 - Hi- I have a 8' cinder block wall that gets full sun, and need to find either a flowering shrub that would cover, or a vine that wouldn't be to hard to manage, or would not need to use a trellis....
view the full question and answer

Native plants for memorial garden in Michigan
March 04, 2008 - I want to start a memorial garden for my daughter. I live in northern Michigan and the area has very tall white pines we have pruned them up about 15' so the area does get partial sun. Which plants w...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center