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Adding Vines to the Garden

Adding Vines to the Garden

For those gardeners who have grown tired of the same old annuals, perennials and bulbs, vines can be a welcome addition and a great way to break the monotony. Vines can be used in a variety of different ways throughout the landscape, and they can create a striking visual impression for all who visit the home and garden.

Vines have a number of benefits to the landscape, including stunning colors, hardiness and the ability to provide extra shade and shelter. Vines are also the perfect way to make use of vertical space that might otherwise be wasted. Vines also make perfect ground cover for those areas of the garden prone to erosion and runoff.  Some vines can even provide edible fruit, bringing a taste of nature to the kitchen.

When bringing vines to the garden, it is important to be aware that there are several different varieties of vines, each with their own unique benefits and features For instance, some of the most common vines are known as twiners – these are the vines with very flexible stems that twine around a support, such as an arbor, an archway or even a tree.  Popular twiners include morning glory vines, hyacinth bean and wisteria.

Some vines attach themselves via a root system.  These vines can attach themselves to any number of surfaces, including walls and posts English ivy and Virginia creeper are two well known root attaching vines.

Tendrils are another popular form of vine, and these vines come with modified leaves or stems which wrap themselves around a support, such as a post,  fence or tree. Passion flower and sweet pea vines are popular tendril varieties for the garden.

Still other vines are known as leaners – for obvious reasons These vines lack any type of built in supporting structure, and therefore they must be tied to or woven through the desired structure. These leaners can be woven through or tied to supporting structures such as fences, posts, trellises or arbors Climbing roses are perhaps the best  known leaners.

In addition to the various varieties, it is important for gardeners to be aware that, just like other plants, vines come in both annual and perennial forms.  Some of the most well  known perennial vines are gold honeysuckle and the aforementioned climbing roses. Popular annual vines include morning glory and moon vine.

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