The Q&A Archives: wisteria vine

Question: We have wisteria vines that we planted last year in very large pots. Should we have put them inside during the winter or not?

Answer: Wisteria is normally reliably winter hardy in your area when planted in the ground. In trying to grow it as a container plant however there are several potential problems. One is that the vine will quickly outgrow the container and become stunted, or it may crack the container -- wisteria is a huge vine with heavy roots and stems after just a few years. The other is that your container may not be large enough to provide insulation at the roots, so the roots are not well protected from both extreme cold and also from oscillating temperatures which can sometimes be more stressful than cold alone. Sometimes it becomes very difficult to move these due to their size and the need for a strong and sturdy support for the vine. I would suggest planting in the ground if possible, otherwise you might bring them into a cold but protected place for the winter. The temperature should be quite cold but still above freezing -- say between 35 and 40 degrees. Bring them in in late fall after they have gone dormant and take them back out in early spring so they can wake up naturally with the season. Good luck with the wisterias!

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