14 beautiful climbing vines for your garden trellis

14 beautiful climbing vines for your garden trellis

Attractive vines are a sure way to add interest to your garden, climbing walls and fences, climbing trellises, and providing beautiful blooms, seasonal color or lush green foliage. Depending on the species, vines use different methods to climb the garden surfaces they come into contact with.

Some vines are intertwined, and their stems form tight coils that help them climb. Other vines develop tendrils that grow outward and grab onto surfaces such as walls and trellises. Still others are true climbing vines that grow on flat surfaces, clinging tightly to walls and fences as they rise. Many climbing vines have aerial roots that anchor their stems to surfaces, while others have discs—specialized suction features on tendrils that grow from their central stems. Many vines require little maintenance other than regular pruning to control their growth and support climbing.

Read on to learn more about climbing vines and check out our best tips for growing them.

Infernal

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Infernal sp.
  • Sun exposure: Full
  • Soil type: Well-drained, sandy, loamy
  • Soil pH: 5.5-6.5

This Central and South American tropical plant is full of vibrant fuchsia, crimson or gold flowers. Bougainvillea can be trained on a vine, tree or climbing shrub, but choose wisely. Some varieties were bred to be more compact, while others can scramble to heights of 100 feet or more. Grow this evergreen vine in full sun in USDA zones 9-11.

Carolina Jessamine

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Gelsemium sempervirens
  • Sun exposure: Sun, partial shade
  • Soil type: Well drained
  • Soil pH: 5.5-8.0

The state flower of South Carolina, this beautiful evergreen vine can be grown on trellises and arches as well as on posts and columns. Bees love the canary-yellow spring flowers, which thrive in full sun or light shade. In the wild, its delicate vines reach high into the tree canopy, so plant Carolina jasmine away from trees if you don't want it to do the same. Hardy in USDA zones 7 and above.

Clematis

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Clematis sp.
  • Sun exposure: Full sun, partial shade
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.5-7.0

This fast-growing vine produces an array of showy flower patterns in many colors and shapes. The most popular clematis varieties are usually deciduous, sending up 6 to 18 feet of new growth and a large stream of purple, pink or white flowers each year. Depending on the species, most prefer moist, well-drained soil and full sun or afternoon shade. This classic mailbox ornament initially requires tying to train.

You can find it in the Southern Living Plant collection.

Climbing hydrangea

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Hydrangea petularis
  • Sun exposure: Full sun, shade
  • Soil type: Rich, moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.0-6.5

These hydrangea species have aerial roots that allow them to cling to the side of structures, climbing to 60 feet or more. Climbing hydrangea produces flat, 8-inch-wide clusters of cream flowers and heart-shaped leaves that have a yellow fall color. This vine will grow in sun or shade, preferably in rich, moist, well-drained soil. Hardy in USDA zones 4-8.

Creeping shape

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Ficus lines up
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained, rich, loamy
  • Soil pH: 5.5-7.5

This fast climber requires shearing to keep it looking tidy when attached to walls and fences. The clinging roots of the small-leaved evergreen vine allow it to cover brick, stucco, and stone. Hardy in USDA zones 8-11; If the cold winter kills it and returns it to the ground, the creeping fig may appear again in the spring.

Honeysuckle

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Lonicera sp.
  • Sun exposure: Bright sun
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained, rich
  • Soil pH: 5.5-8.0

Skip the invasive Japanese honeysuckle in favor of better-behaved species. Fragrant summer flowers of woody honeysuckle (Lonicera is in danger) grows well in dappled shade, while the brilliant red flowers of the native trumpet honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) It thrives best in full sun. Trumpet honeysuckle may not have a sweet scent, but its flowers attract hummingbirds.

Ivy

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  • Estimate the life of the Zoya: Ivy sp.
  • Sun exposure: Partial shade
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained, loamy, fertile
  • Soil pH: 5.5-6.0

This shade-loving vine can spread as a ground cover or cling to and cover walls, trellises, fences and trees. Ivy adds a stately touch to historic homes but is also invasive in much of the South. Frequent pruning and pulling is required to keep it under control. It thrives in shade and spreads quickly, so prune regularly to control it. The vine's dark, glossy leaves also work well from containers and hanging baskets.

Morning glory

Soichiro Furukawa/iEm/Getty Images
  • Zoya life can be appreciated: dream sp.
  • Sun exposure: Full
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.0-6.8

Related species include the night-blooming moonflower (Ipomoea alba) And sweet potato vine (Ipomoea potato), which is grown for its ornamental leaves. Morning glory (Ipomoea zero) It is an annual plant that produces large, showy blue or white flowers in summer. Plant it in containers as a trailing plant. Morning glory requires support or other plants for staking out. All of these plants grow in full sun, but hardiness varies.

Star jasmine

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Trachylospermum jasminoides
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained, loamy
  • Soil pH: 6.0-7.0

Star jasmine is not a true jasmine, but the South loves it anyway. The deep fragrance of the small white flowers permeates neighborhoods throughout USDA zones 8-10 in late spring, attracting bees and other admirers. Star jasmine is a vigorous grower that can be strung over walls or trained to grow on a trellis or pergola in partial shade. It will produce more flowers when given more sunlight. Plant in well-drained soil where it has room to spread and climb.

Wisteria

Via plantplaces.com
  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Wisteria sp.
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.0-7.0

Clear, woody stems and abundant, fragrant, drooping purple flowers are hallmarks of wisteria. We recommend planting American wisteria to avoid the invasive tendencies of exotic species. Plant in full sun in USDA zones 7-9 with strong support of heavy vines (or Kentucky wisteria, which is colder).

You can find it in the Southern Living Plant collection.

Trumpet vine

Steve Bender
  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Campsis Radicals
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.0 to 8.0

Clusters of red-orange, trumpet-shaped flowers appear from summer to fall. This fast climber uses aerial roots to climb arbors, trellises or fences. Hummingbirds are frequent visitors. Grow in full sun in well-drained loam, sand or clay. Cut the woody vine to the ground in spring where it thrives on new growth. Contact with the vine causes skin redness and swelling, and is toxic if ingested.

Sweet potato vine

Hector Manuel Sanchez; Design: Lydia Purcell


  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Ipomoea potatoes
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained, rich
  • Soil pH: 5.6-6.5

Sweet potato vines have lobed or heart-shaped leaves in colors ranging from purple to purplish-black. They are vigorous growers and can be invasive as a ground cover, so keep them pruned. They hibernate in areas where frost is not a problem, and regrow new leaves in the spring. Compact varieties spread about 2-4 feet. Plant the vine in a location that gets full sun for six to eight hours daily for fuller, more vibrant leaves. Make sure the soil is well-drained because the plant's tubers are susceptible to root rot.

Mandeville

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  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Mandeville sp.
  • Sun exposure: Complete, partial
  • Soil type: Moist, well-drained
  • Soil pH: 6.6 to 7.8

From spring through fall, clusters of trumpet-shaped flowers appear among the dark, glossy leaves of mandevilla. Mandevillas can grow up to 100 feet, but there are compact types. They are tropical plants that thrive in sunny locations. In cooler climates, transplant it as an annual. Give them plenty of sun for best flower production with afternoon shade in hotter climates.

Crosven

Photo: Ralph Lee Anderson
  • Zoya life can be appreciated: Begonia caprillata
  • Sun exposure: Full
  • Soil type: Well drained
  • Soil pH: 6.6 to 8.0

Native to the South, Crossvine climbs any surface. Red or orange trumpet-shaped flowers appear in mid-spring. The vine produces more flowers when grown in full sun. It can tolerate many soil types but prefers moist, well-drained, organically rich soil. It may lose its leaves during harsh winters in zones 5 and 6. Hummingbirds and butterflies are attracted to the vine's nectar.

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