Vines contains plants that can be described dense, airy, brushy, shiny, colorful, and vertical. Vertical growth is the dominant feature of most vines. They tend to want to grow up and climb on any available vertical wall, post, or even another plant that is in close proximity. Many of these vines have beautiful flowers displaying the colors of the rainbow.

Vines may be selected for covering an unsightly feature, planted for soil retention purposes, for fall color, for unique leaf shapes and colors, and for gorgeous flowers or for the seeds they produce. One of the most colorful of vining plants is the Clematis. It only takes one sighting of a trellis loaded with flowers to desire some of these plants for a landscape.

Perhaps the greatest asset of vines is the small amount of ground space they require. Just about any landscape that needs a vertical plant or has very little ground space can be fitted with a vine. Vines can be used to relieve the monotony of a large expanse of fencing or to hide a fence with a mass of green foliage.

As with other woody plants, the time and energy you'll spend pruning vines has much to do with the plant you select and the spot in which you place it. You'll save yourself a good deal of anguish if you pick a vine that can live comfortably in the space you have.

How vines grow affects how much pruning they may need. Among the most intrepid are species that climb by using aerial rootlets and species like Virginia creeper that have holdfasts, little suction cups that grab onto walls and other surfaces. Also exuberant (and sometimes invasive) are many vines that twine, such as Wisteria, bittersweet, and honeysuckles. Somewhat less rampant are the vines that ascend by using tendrils, such as Clematis, grape, and passionflower. But only somewhat.

Unlike many shrubs and trees that do well without ever being thinned or cut back, even vines grown in sizable settings may require regular pruning to keep them healthy, productive, attractive, and under control. Many vines just don't know when to quit—or in which direction to grow. They must be taken in hand early on or they will be collapsing trellises, pulling down fences, and obscuring windows and doors.

Once vines have developed adequate roots, most just keep on growing above ground. To keep a vigorous climber healthy, you must remove any dead, damaged, diseased, or unproductive stems, remove overly tangled stems, remove errant stems, especially those growing away from the support, direct its growth and also limit its growth.

Reducing a vine's mass not only ensures that your fence won't collapse, it also allows light and air to reach the plant's interior. Don't forget, though, that pruning doesn't just reduce mass: it can increase it.

We encourage you to come see us or give a call at 501-407-2729 for help with planting and selecting the vine that is right for your yard.



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