The Q&A Archives: Annual vines in windy Northeast

Question: I have roof deck in Boston that receives full sun, but is very windy. I've planted Morning Glory, Sweet Pea and Nasturtium seedlings in window boxes, trying to get them to grow up the railing surrounding the deck. They aren't doing very well. Do you have suggestions of how I can save this years crop or some more wind resistent vines to plant next year?

Answer: Wind can really do a number on tender leaves. You might try growing Kiwi (I like the tri-colored leaves of Actinidia kolomikta). You could also grow trumpet vine (Campsis radicans), silver lace vine, and cape honeysuckle. Most of these are vigorous growers, so you'll have to prune them to keep them on the railing. Sweet Peas have thicker leaves than the morning glory and nasturtiums so they should adapt to the wind, but they prefer to grow in the cooler temperatures of late winter and early spring. Perhaps that's why they're not doing well now. Ivy should grow well in wind and full sun and there are many, many varieties to choose from including one with curly margined needlepoint shaped leaves. Hope these suggestion are just what you're looking for!

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