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Which fast growing climbers can I plant now and get a good show in august?

I want to cover a fence at the bottom of the garden in climbing (preferably flowering) plants so that it has a reasonable coverage by mid-August (we're getting married and having the reception at home!). It's a bit shady but most of it gets good sun in the mid to late morning and dappled sun at some other times of the day (it's approximately east/north east facing, but some light filters in through the fence too as it's not a solid construction).

We only moved in last year and most of the initial gardening was fighting back the weeds, so I've not had a chance to get any plants very established, unfortunately. I've already planted a honeysuckle (forgotten which one!) at one end of the fence & a clematis 'Miss Bateman' in the middle. The adjoining fence (which faces south/south east) has a jasmine stephanense at the end closest to the fence I want to cover.

Most of the flowers nearby are (or will be) purple, pink, blue or white, with splashes of yellowy colours. I'm aiming for a fairly naturalistic look, and the end of the garden where I want to plant the climbers has a woodland edge feel to it, with ferns, rocks & an old cherry tree, and trees out the back behind our garden.

I was thinking about sweet peas on the sunniest part of the fence (I actually attempted to sow some earlier this year but they failed completely - I'd never grown them before and I think I should have nicked the seed coat or soaked them), but I wasn't sure whether they'd be OK as even the sunniest parts are in dappled shade for the whole afternoon, and most advice on sweet peas says full sun.

If all else fails I might just give up and let the bindweed from behind the fence grow up through it, but having just spent most of the last year battling the bindweed in the rest of the garden I'd rather not (no matter how pretty the flowers might be)!!!



Why not grow some annuals this year - Cobaea scandens is the right colour, and a fast grower. Not sweet peas - they do need full sun.

Clematis viticella is a fast growing permanent climber, and you can get them in several colours that would look right. A very good and reliable one is 'Etoile Violette' - purple, or C. vit. 'Alba Luxurians' which is a prolific and long flowering white one with green tinges on the petal edges.

Good luck with it all!

26 May, 2010


the annual blue version of bindweed Morning Glory would look nice

26 May, 2010


just thought of another annual "black eyes susie" its mostly yellow ones with a black eye but I may have seen white. Hope it helps and good luck :o)

26 May, 2010


Thanks for the answers.

I've just planted another honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum 'Heaven Scent'), and paid a bit more for it than I usually would in order to get one that was fairly large so that it will hopefully get to a decent size by August. I've ended up planting a sweet pea anyway, on the part of the fence that seems to get the most sun (pretty much all morning, and filtered light through the fence in the afternoon).

I've investigated the plants you've suggested, but not sure whether Black eyed susan, Morning glory & Cobaea scandens would be able to cope with the semi-shady conditions - what do you think? They all seem to be recommended for full sun from the info I can find.

I think I will get another clematis. Am I right in thinking that if I want decent flowers this year I'll need one from "group 3" (which includes the two you recommended, Spritzhenry) as they flower on this season's growth? I think my 'Miss Bateman' is probably a dead loss for this year as it's only likely to get a few flowers right at the bottom and mostly flowers in early summer (although it's supposed to have a second flush in late summer). Ah well, at least it should look nice next year!

7 Jun, 2010


I've just thought of those flower pouches-- filled with busy lizzies or similar can look very attractive

7 Jun, 2010


Hallo again - yes, the group 3 Clematis do flower later than the others, although group 2 normally flower early and then produce more flowers later. Not as many, though. My 'Miss Bateman' is a goner for the time being - she got wilt and collapsed! The larger flowered Clems are more prone to wilt, unfortunately.

The C. viticellas are definitely the most reliable and floriferous. I think that Cobaea would be OK in part sun, as long as it got some during the day and wasn't in shade for more than half the day. Morning Glory would be likely to close its flowers in even part shade!

7 Jun, 2010

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