I planted a wisteria at the front of my house last year, the plan being
to eventually cover all the brickwork. This year virtually all of the
growth has been from one shoot. My question is, should I train this in
a sort of zig-zag to cover the lower part of the house (only a few feet
between window and door), or should I train it straight up to the first
floor and trust that next year's growth will cover the brickwork below?
Thanks for any pointers.
> I planted a wisteria at the front of my house last year, the plan being
> to eventually cover all the brickwork. This year virtually all of the
> growth has been from one shoot. My question is, should I train this in
> a sort of zig-zag to cover the lower part of the house (only a few feet
> between window and door), or should I train it straight up to the first
> floor and trust that next year's growth will cover the brickwork below?
They are quite rampant, and you will soon have no end of shoots to train
whichever way you like. So design what you think you would like the
basic structure of the plant to be in the longer run. It isn't uncommon
to have use several laterals twisted together for the sideways runs.
Usually horizontal runs work best, because the flowers fall down from
spurs. So I'd be inclined for now to train a vertical, and take
horizontals off it later.
You probably want to keep it a bit below roof level because each year it
will grow up and all over the place, and therefore it is a good idea to
have a gap you can clear to keep it out of your roof, rather than have
to be cutting it off as soon as it starts growing.
Another reason for having this structure is that getting them to flower
abundantly involves a pruning program of summer pruning (July/August)
and winter pruning (Feb). In summer you reduce shoots you aren't
training to extend about 7 buds. Then in Feb to 2 buds. It is easier
to follow this if you have a clear structure you are working to.
Wisteria will grow into a big heavy vine. It is not self supporting and
will not cling to a brick wall so you have to supply a substantial trellis
that it can twine around that will hold the weight in years to come,
otherwise it will keep falling down and unless the leaves get good exposure
to the sun it will not grow well. I would be gentle with it for a while
just lightly tying leaders to the trellis in the general direction you want
them to go.
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