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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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Monday - February 22, 2010

From: Portland, OR
Region: Northwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Vines for a shady porch in Oregon
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

My husband and I just bought our first home this fall in St. Johns, Portland. We would like to grow a vine on our front porch, but it is in full shade. It faces north east. We planted some jasmine vines last fall but they are almost dead due to either the winter freeze or too much shade. Are there any vines that will do well in full shade? I would like to get a native vine.

ANSWER:

In garden design class you are taught that plant selection comes last.  That is because by the time you have considered all the other elements (soil and light conditions, plant type and form) there are actually not very many plants to choose from.

In your case we are looking for a vine that is native to Oregon and will grow in the shade.  Although a search of our Native Plant Database yields a dozen vines, a Recommended Species search gives us three.  Any one of them is bound to do better than the jasmine.

Following these links will take you directly to the information page for these plants.  There you will find a wealth of information plus links to even more (such as Google and USDA).

Clematis columbiana (rock clematis)

Clematis ligusticifolia (western white clematis)

Lonicera ciliosa (orange honeysuckle)

 


Clematis columbiana

Clematis ligusticifolia

Lonicera ciliosa

 

 

 

 

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