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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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Thursday - October 29, 2009

From: Livermore, CA
Region: California
Topic: Vines
Title: Vines for trellis in Livermore, CA
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for a native vine for a northern California location. It's Livermore California with a climate intermediate between the SF Bay and the Central Valley. Some frost in the winter. Maybe 10 days over 100 in the summer. The location gets full sun until late afternoon. I want to cover a trellis about 11' x 15' wide and 10'high. Would Wisteria frutescens work?

ANSWER:

Wisteria frutescens (American wisteria) is not too likely to do well in your climate.  Please look at the distribution map from the USDA Plants Database and you will see that it occurs in the eastern portion of North America.  If you click on Texas on the map, the most western state of the distribution, you will see that it only occurs in the easternmost counties of the state where the rainfall and humidity are higher.

Mr. Smarty Plants can suggest several vining plants that are native to your area and should do well on your trellis:

Aristolochia californica (California dutchman's pipe) and here are photos and more information.

Calystegia macrostegia (island false bindweed) and here is more information.

Clematis lasiantha (pipestem clematis)

Clematis ligusticifolia (western white clematis)

Lonicera hispidula (pink honeysuckle)

Vitis californica (California wild grape) and here are photos and information.

Bay Natives in San Francisco, one of Associate Suppliers, lists the above plants for sale and offers a 10% discount for members of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.


Calystegia macrostegia

Clematis lasiantha

Clematis ligusticifolia

Lonicera hispidula

 

 

 

 

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