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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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Monday - July 21, 2008

From: Decatur, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Native vine for shade on west side in Texas
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have just put in a trellis to cover the west side of my house for shade. What would be the best native vine to put their for quick growth. I plan on putting a rose (Fortunia) but can't do that till winter or early spring. I don't want something that needs to be tended to often or to invasive.

ANSWER:

Summer is not a good time to plant vines, either, but we'll make some suggestions. However, before you commit to a vine to be replaced by a rose later in the year, please be sure you understand the growth habits of these vines. Most are perennials, they can be invasive, they self-seed and grow from suckers, and may not be good neighbors to a rose. If they try to share the same space, the rose is probably going to be engulfed. If you place them side-by-side, you will need to be constantly pruning and pulling up seedlings and suckers from the vine to protect the rose. The good news is that these native vines are pretty self-sufficient, but that's also the bad news. They take care of themselves very well. Be sure and read all of the links provided, so you can make your own decision about the suitability of each. Go to our list of Native Plant Suppliers, put your town and state in the Enter Search Location box, and you will get a list of seed companies, nurseries and landscape consultants that are knowledgeable in the use of native plants and are located in your general area. 

Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) - semi-evergreen, blooms March to May, attracts hummingbirds, less invasive than similar Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper)

Clematis pitcheri (bluebill) - dies to ground in Fall, blooms May to September

Ipomoea alba (tropical white morning-glory) - annual vine, more information and pictures

Lonicera albiflora (western white honeysuckle) - deciduous shrub with twining branches, not as invasive as Japanese honeysuckle


Bignonia capreolata

Bignonia capreolata

Clematis pitcheri

Lonicera albiflora

 

 

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