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ANNUAL FLOWERING VINES – CLIMBERS AND TWINERS”
Add some colorful plants to make your garden “pop”. If you are looking for something a bit different than just trees, shrubs and perennial flowers for your garden space, think “up” and add some height. Annual flowering vines will definitely add that extra dimension and element in your garden. All of these vines are typically sun-loving, easy to care for and have very few pest issues. They really make an all-around great plant!
Types of Vines:
The Climbers They climb by tendrils that reach out from the vine and grasp an object to wrap around for support.
The Twiners They twist their stems or leaf stalks up any support, like a fence, trellis or arbor. Twining vines climb most easily if given something straight and narrow to wrap around.
A subcategory of twiners is
Clinging Vines that climb via aerial rootlets or by a “holdfast”/suction cup that helps them stick to the surface
The Creepers They are planted to creep along the ground to form a colorful ground-cover. The Ramblers or Scramblers They are the woody, vigorous plants with long, arching stems that emerge from the base of plants. (Ex. Climbing Roses which don’t really “climb” like vines do. Note - these are perennials.)
This vine will add unique color and texture to the garden and fully lives up to its’ name. It is related to the morning glory.
* It’s palm-shaped leaves have lacy fern like foliage.
* It grows quickly: 6’-12’ tall and reaches for whatever it can grab.
* It blooms from midsummer to first frost.
* Its’ abundant, bright red, tubular flowers attract hummingbirds.
* All parts of the cardinal vine are poisonous to humans, cats & dogs.
This is a less vigorous vine than the others & comes in orange, yellow or white.
* It has velvety 3” wide leaves that form a dense canvas backdrop for the bright, black-eyed susan flowers.
* Flowers can be yellow, orange, or white (all with finely etched black “eyes” in the center) and blooms in July & August.
* It grows 4-8 ft long.
* It also grows well in hanging baskets.
If you love purple, this is the plant for you!
* Leaves are greenish-purple with deep purple veins
and purple stems.
* Fragrant, pinkish-purple flowers turn to shiny red/purple pods when mature on the vine – similar in size to a lima bean
* The fruit (or bean) is edible. * The vines vigorously grow 10-15 feet long and can provide quick cover.
* In a sunny location, it will bloom throughout the summer.
This vines’ foliage looks similar to a garden pole bean with dark green, heart-shaped leaves
* It has clusters of scarlet or red flowers and 3-5” red pods.
* Grows 8-12 feet long, blooming June – October.
* The flowers open at sunrise and fade at sunset attracting hummingbirds, butterflies and bees.
* The flowers are followed by typical bean pods up to a foot long.
* The pods are edible as snap beans or shelled later. The flowers are also edible, having a bean-like flavor and can be used in salads.
It is sometimes called the tropical white morning glory and is a species of night-blooming morning glory.
* It is related to the sweet potato vine.
* The leaves are heart-shaped.
* It can grow up to 10-15 ft. long.
* The flowers are beautifully fragrant and can get to be 6” in diameter. * It blooms from July to October.
Structures: Twining vines are easiest to grow if they have something to grab onto and twine around. If possible, structures should be oriented east-to-west in an area where they won’t shade other sun loving plants.
Examples of some structures are: 1. Fences 2. Arches 3. Trellises 4. Posts 5. Pergolas
6. Other overhead structures that have a network or symmetrical grid pattern of wooden, metal or plastic slats.
7. Vines will also twine around small branches & stems of shrubs & trees.
8. Walls – needs nails, screws or eye hooks to attach the wires for support.
Benefits of Vines:
There are many benefits to planting annual flowering vines.
1. It saves space in smaller gardens and expands the growing area by going vertical.
2. Flowering vines can truly show off their colorful beauty when displayed vertically.
3. It provides visual interest in the garden.
4. It can cover areas that are eyesores.
5. Use it as a groundcover in areas where little else will grow.
6. It can provide privacy.
7. Finally, for something fun you can try… Make a teepee out of poles and plant vines along the outside for a green, summer hideout for your kids and grand-kids.
This year we featured our
Des Plaines Butterfly Garden, as well as the
Des Plaines community gardens.