Asked on Jul 31, 2013

Good climbing plant for an arbor

Rosalie MBrenda Shannon GayBrenda De Lair


My husband just built me a beautiful arbor for a walkway off of our deck. and I am wondering if anyone has recommendations on good hardy flowering climbing plants that would take off up it. This is my first arbor so any other suggestions would greatly be appreciated. I will post a picture once he has put it in today.
15 answers
  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jul 31, 2013

    I was working at a clients yesterday and she has a small arbor over her small backyard deck. She planted grapes and they have done a fine job of covering the whole thing. What is great is this provides some cooling shade for her sliding door in the summer but allows winter warmth to come in.

  • Peg
    on Jul 31, 2013

    I grow several types of clematis. There are so many to choose from. They'll get bigger each year. They like cool "feet" and vines need to be in sun for good flowering. I also grow climbing roses and plant some cardinal vine and morning glories.

    , pink rose and purple clematis on my arbor, pink rose growing on the fence to the arbor I brought it back from near death when I bought the property
  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 1, 2013

    If you want to make that arbor a shady refuge, our native Dutchman’s pipe (Aristolochia macrophylla) is a great plant for that. And it's a host plant for the pipevine swallowtail butterfly.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 2, 2013

    While the fragrance of Japanese honeysuckle is intoxicating, it is a wildly invasive plant, displacing native species in the ecosystem, and, I believe, is prohibited from sale in Wisconsin. There's more from University of WIsconsin-Extension here:

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 2, 2013

    Hmm. the above response was in light of a comment suggesting Japanese honeysuckle, which seems to have disappeared, so I guess it is no longer apropos, but it's a warning worth repeating.

  • If you know you're going to stay in the house for a while, you might want to consider a wisteria. But you have to have patience as it takes about 5-7 years before it really blooms. It's worth the wait.

  • Kristen Numen
    on Aug 2, 2013

    Passion Flower or bleeding heart vine are good options too. I do love honeysuckle as well as these all stay nice and green. It truly depends on how much you are out in your garden. If you're going to be out daily, than I wouldn't worry about an invasive vine as you can give it attention and prune it. But if you don't want to have to baby anything, than go in a different direction.

  • Heather Scott
    on Aug 2, 2013

    Clematis, and Silver Lace Vine are good choices, my silver lace covered the privacy screen on the deck in less than a summer and is patiently growing over the post waiting for the construction to finish!

  • Cheryl Bissonnette
    on Aug 2, 2013

    I have Wisteria and Clematis together ,The Clematis bloom when the Wisteria is not in bloom ,My Wisteria bloom heavy in early summer then here and there in the summer.. I have several different Clematis to make it interesting.

  • Jen Pontow
    on Aug 2, 2013

    WOW thank you so much for all the suggestions!!! I can't wait to go and pick out the flowers. It is a small arbor not o e that covers a full deck or anything so I'm guessing the wisteria would not work. But I do have clematis already that do nicely in our soil so may e that's a route. but want to check I to these other plants I'm not familiar with.

  • Brenda De Lair
    on Aug 2, 2013

    I have had good luck with hydrangea vine. It is hardy, beautiful, and grows in sun or shade. The flowers are very pretty as well.

  • Fran Barrett
    on Aug 2, 2013

    Plant hops and they'll cover the arbor in a few weeks. They are very good for cooling, but get very big very fast! Not invasive because it's an annual. ;)

  • Brenda De Lair
    on Aug 3, 2013

    I grew hops on an arbour and found it to be very invasive. They started to sprout up 6 feet away from the original plant and they are very difficult to get rid of. It took about 5 years to finally be free. They do cover well and quickly and the leaf is interesting. I found the bloom to be plain and the one I had was not an annual so you may need to check out the variety. It could be a good option if planted in a large pot to contain the roots.

  • Brenda Shannon Gay
    on Aug 4, 2013

    Mandevilla vines are fast growing and have beautiful flowers...

  • Rosalie M
    on Aug 13, 2013

    I agree with the Clematis. Very beautiful flower and several color varieties. If someone does your lawn and garden work, be sure they don't hit it with the weed whacker. I have lost 3 clematis that way.

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