A chimney reacher but also a vigorous pergola plant among vines - small yellow flowers sustain bees and hoverflies and the five-lobed leaves turn wine-red in autumn
- Position: full sun or shade
- Soil: fertile, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: fast-growing
- Flowering period: June to August
- Hardiness: fully hardy
Justifiably popular thanks to its unrivalled autumn colour, this vigorous creeper none the less needs to be handled with care. Its five-pointed, deeply divided, mid-green leaves turn brilliant shades of crimson-red in autumn and there are occasionally dark purple berries to add to the mix. It's a showstopping plant that will quickly romp across a large wall but it needs lots of space, regular pruning and will smother other plants it finds in its way. All of this make it an unsuitable choice for small gardens or for laissez-faire gardeners.
- Garden care: Provide some support until the plant is well established. (This may take up to two years). Once established, tie in stray shoots and prune in autumn or early winter to keep the plant within bounds, paying particular attention to stems that are encroaching on windows, guttering or roofs.
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Q:We would like to plant a Virginia creeper on our garden wall - when is the best time of year?
Many thanksAsked on 9/8/2013 by Karin from Epsom Surrey
As a general rule plants that are grown in containers can be planted at any time of year as long as the soil isn't frozen solid. The best times are in the autumn when the soil is still warm enough to encourage root growth but the plant isn't in active growth, or the spring before the temperatures start to rise. You can also plant in mid summer as long as you make sure the plants are kept well watered.
Hope this helpsAnswered on 9/9/2013 by Georgina from Crocus
> I wondered what height the virginia creeper comes when purchased (e.g. the 2L pot) and if it is suitable for the following.
To Plant in a 1m wide and 30 cm across planter - I can make the planter deep if needed.
> - I want it to grow up a bin store 1m wide by 5m high and then over the roof of said binstore. I would like something fast growing but that can be controlled :-)
> Does it sound ok? I have made a sort of trellise from wooden brances to help something climb up
> Kind regards and look forward to any adviceAsked on 2/26/2013 by peako2689
Our Parthenocissus are normally despatched in 2 or 3 litre pots growing up 60cm canes, however they will be dormant at this time of year. For the size of space you would like to fill I would recommend the smaller Parthenocissus henryana www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/classid.1691 as the other varieties of virginia creeper are very vigorous and can easily get out of control.
The size of your planter sounds fine but if you can make it deep or if you can make the planter so that it is like a raised bed effect and the plant can grow down into the soil below then this would be very beneficial.
If grown just in the planter you will need to keep it well watered especially during dry spells and I would suggest topdressing it every year with fresh compost and a slow-release fertiliser.
The plant will need some support until well established. Once established, tie in stray shoots and prune in autumn or early winter to keep the plant within bounds, paying particular attention to stems that are encroaching on any windows, guttering or roofs. I hope this helps. SarahAnswered on 2/28/2013 by Anonymous
Q:Climber for South facing wall
Dear Sir/ Madam, I wanted to order a couple of climbers for a south facing wall. I already have a Virginia Creeper growing but the wall is concrete and looks terrible in the in winter. Have you got any recommendations for an evergreen climber that would grow well on a south facing wall, and also grow with a Virginia Creeper? Kind regards, RolandAsked on 12/10/2009 by s8films
A:Hello Roland, The best will be the Hederas, which are self-clinging like the Parthenocissus - just click on the link below to go straight to them. http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.hedera/ If however you can put up a network of wires or trellis, then you can choose from any of the following. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/climbers/plcid.15/vid.228/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 12/11/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Climbers for North East facing wall
Hi I was just wondering if you could give me some advice please. Our house is a Victorian end of terrace - the side of the house faces North-East. The side of the house is very bare (only two tiny windows on ground floor) and we would like to grow something up the wall. We have had trouble with graffiti in the past and want to paint the side of the house and then put trellis to about 7ft. Can you suggest something that would grow quite quickly please. Kind Regards JoannaAsked on 11/6/2009 by Joanna Swainson
A:Thank you so much Helen, this helps a lot.Answered on 11/9/2009 by Joanna Swainson
A:Hello Joanna, If you click on the link below it will take you to our fast growing climbers, which will cope with low light levels. If you click into each card you can then see the eventual height and spread of each plant - some of them are pretty big. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/climbers/plcid.15/vid.186/vid.237/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 11/9/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Climbing Plant on a North-Facing Trellis
Dear Sir/Madam, Could you recommend a climbing plant for a trellis? The trellis in question is set against my neighbour's wall, and faces northward. So, I'm looking for a plant to provide maximum, attractive, fast-growing coverage. Yours faithfully, PeterAsked on 8/18/2009 by Peter Lawson
A:Hello Peter, I have done a search on our Plant Finder and if you click on the following link it will take you to all the climbers which will grow on a north facing aspect and are fast growing (although keep in mind most plants are going into their dormant period now) http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/climbers/plcid.15/vid.186/vid.237/ I hope this helps.Answered on 8/19/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Is my Virginia Creeper OK?
A couple of years ago I purchased a Virginia Creeper. However I am now a little concerned because the plant has remained twiggy, with a small amount of growth (only three shoots up the wall) and the leaves all fall off in the winter leaving just twigs. Should I prune it right down to try and encourage growth and bushiness and, if so, am I ok to do this now or do I need to wait until the winter? I did think that this would retain leaves all the year round, is this correct?Asked on 5/3/2005 by Celia Shaw
A:These are usually pretty tough climbers that grow well once they have had a chance to settle in although that can be spindly when young. They are deciduous, so the leaves will fall off in autumn to leave bare stems over winter. I wouldn't recommend pruning it as this will just set it back even further. However I would try to improve the growing conditions before you dig it up. Feed the plant with a balanced fertiliser, such as Growmore and mulch well around the base of the plant with some organic matter, such as well-rotted horse manure. The feed will help encourage some new growth and the mulch will help to retain soil moisture and improve the existing soil. Then keep the plant well watered in dry weather and hopefully it should produce some more shoots this year.Answered on 5/4/2005 by Crocus
Q:What climber can I grow in a shady area?
I have a blank wall that only gets sun late afternoon. Can you please advise me what I should choose?Asked on 3/21/2005 by william high
A:There are some lovely climbers that would be suitable for your shady wall. Just click on the link below each plant to find out more about that particular one. 'Lonicera japonica Halliana' - pure white flowers that fade to yellow http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1678&CategoryID= 'Chaenomeles x superba Crimson and Gold' - a wall shrub with red flowers http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=780&CategoryID= 'Jasminum nudiflorum' - wall shrub with bright yellow flowers in winter http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1667&CategoryID= 'Schizophragma hydrangeoides' - hydrangea-like white flowers http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=4374&CategoryID= 'Hedera varieties - evergreen climbers http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/pl/?q=edera 'Garrya elliptica James Roof' - has extra long, silky catkins http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=3880&CategoryID= Hydrangea anomala subsp. petiolaris' - climbing hydrangea http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1665&CategoryID= Parthenocissus - fiery autumnal colours http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?CommonName=parthenocissusAnswered on 3/22/2005 by Crocus
Q:What can I grow against a north facing wall?
We own a bungalow in the highlands of Scotland which is a holiday home. The front is North Facing on to a natural woodland hill so is quite shady although sheltered. We would like to grow something against the front to provide colour, smell and interest. Can you help?Asked on 3/6/2005 by Pam Lindsay
A:There are a few climbers or wall shrubs that would suit your position (not all are evergreen, but you could mix evergreen with deciduous for more interest): Here are some of the best Lonicera japonica 'Halliana' - creamy white flowers that fade to yellow http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1678&CategoryID= Jasminum nudiflorum - a wall shrub with bright yellow flowers in winter http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1667&CategoryID= Hedera varieties - tough, evergreen climbers http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/pl/?q=edera Garrya elliptica 'James Roof' - and evergreen wall shrub with extra long silky catkins http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=3880&CategoryID= Hydrangea anomala subsp. petiolaris - the climbing hydrangea http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1665&CategoryID= Parthenocissus - fiery autumnal colours http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?CommonName=parthenocissusAnswered on 3/9/2005 by Crocus
October sees the start of the dormant season which is the best time to prune lots of deciduous garden trees. You can prune newly planted trees to remove any damaged growth and help balance the shape of the canopy as well as maintain a dominant main leaderRead full article