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By Eldira

United Kingdom Gb


Can anyone tell me which is/are the best climber/s to cover a wall about ten feet long and six feet high please? I like ivy but, unless there's a low-growing variety (climbing, not ground cover) then I think that's out. I'm a pensioner of limited mobility so can't really cope with anything that needs loads of pruning and/or maintenance. My soil is very heavy clay and the planting situation is mostly shade.

Thanks for your help.

Best wishes.




You haven't said where you are in the UK, nor which way the wall faces - there's a vast difference between, say, a north facing wall in Derbyshire, and a south facing wall in London, so please give that info. I have something in mind, but if you live in a cold part of the country and the wall isn't south facing, it won't do.

14 Jul, 2011


Thanks for your message, Bamboo. I should have said where I was - I only thought about that afterwards! I'm in Essex and the fence in question is south-facing but under a tree in a sheltered spot so it's quite shady. I should also mention that there is a trellis along the wall so that should make things a little easier!

15 Jul, 2011


Garrya elliptica will give evergreen cover - has long catkin like tassels in about February, and won't mind the shade either. Best planted in spring though, in case we get a seriously bad winter again. Otherwise, Akebia quinata, which is semi evergreen, with flowers. You'd probably need 2 climbers for a ten foot length of wall. Other options are Passiflora and Hydrangea anomala.

15 Jul, 2011


Thanks very much for that, Bamboo - and apologies for the tardy reply!

I'll look around and see if I can get any of the plants you mention - though I expect I'll have to get them from the internet as the local garden centres keep a very limited stock.

Thanks again for all your help!

Best regards,


1 Aug, 2011


If you like ivy, you could use it - make sure you get a Hedera helix variety (Harald, Goldstern, Goldheart, Eva), as they're smaller, but there's no doubt that, after a couple of years, you will need to shear it flat to the wall to keep it in check, and clip the top to stop it getting too tall. On the other hand, it'll only need doing twice a year (May and September) and you can safely ignore it the rest of the time.

1 Aug, 2011

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