Vine to Cover Patio Arbor - Knowledgebase Question

Austin, TX
Question by ajhooper
March 26, 1998
I have an open air patio area in my back yard that has beams running across the top. I would like to plant something that will grow up and over the beams as a covering. Would wisteria be a good choice? The patio area is under a tree, but it will get somesun. I am looking for a plant that will grow quickly, flower, but have easy "upkeep". Austin is pretty warm year round, with only an occasional freeze during the winter. Any suggestions?


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Answer from NGA
March 26, 1998

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Wisteria takes a while to get established and needs full sun in order to bloom well, but there are other beautiful options that will perform well in these conditions. Consider growing a few different colored varieties of Trumpet Creeper (Campsis radicans), which grows up to 30' long. It's happiest in full sun, but will grow in partial shade. Trumpet honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) is similar, and grows up to 50' long, and appreciates some shade. Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) requires shade to grow, and has very fragrant flowers. It grows up to 12' long. No expert pruning skills are required for any of these - just clip them after they bloom to keep them in bounds and to maintain a pleasing display. I'm sure you can find a source of these at Garden Escape's on-line catalog (and they're based in Austin!): www.garden.com. Hope this helps!

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