The Q&A Archives: Climbing Vines for full shade

Question: I live in Covington, WA (slightly southeast of Seattle - I believe it's considered zone 4?). I'm looking for some nice climbing trellis plants that will help break up the 80' expanse of the north side of my home. There is a roof overhang, and there is no sun whatsoever during the day. A local gardener has recommended 2 possibilities - evergreen clematis, and climbing hydrangea. I've looked at these on the internet, and i'm not terribly keen on either one. Is there something else that would do well in this situation, and possibly something that has attractive flowers, too? thank you!

Answer: There are very few flowering vines that will thrive in full shade. Evergreen Clematis and climbing Hydrangea may be your only choices because they adapt to most growing conditions in the Pacific Northwest. You might try Fiveleaf Akebia (Akebia quinata). It's a twining vine growing up to 30' with small purple flowers with a light, fruity scent. It has attractive foliage.

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