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Having a Vine Time

The phrase, “I’m a gardener” tends to elicit the same questions from anyone. People want to know if you grow vegetables or flowers. They either picture a quaint little patch of tomatoes and cucumbers or a bed of lilies up against a house. Few people ever take the time to appreciate the “viner” things of life – the vining plants.

A vining plant is a beautiful way to spruce up a house. Some vining plants can climb trellises, walls, fences, or anything else that you can think of. Other vines droop downwards out of their pot, spreading themselves all over the area. Mixing these up is a great way to dress up the garden.

Vines are almost essential to achieve a “natural” look when man is involved with the growing process. They are a great way to conceal the man-made structures when you want to achieve the “grove” effect. For instance, if you have a gazebo in your backyard and want to make it look like a natural hideaway, plant some vines at the bottom of the supports. It’ll take some time, but eventually they will overgrow the structure and give it a very natural appearance. For some surfaces, taking some chicken wire or something of the sort will help the vines to grow by giving them something to which they can cling.

Many people don’t realize that vines aren’t just limited to the ivy you see growing up the side of a building. Vines can also be flowering plants. The twining snapdragon bears beautiful purple and white flowers. A cup and saucer vine blooms flowers that … well, they look just like a cup and saucer. There are many other vines as well. Take a trip down to your local greenhouse and see what is available. Also, be sure to check out whether the vine is an annual – blooms once, or a perennial – blooms over the course of several years.

And as with every plant, be sure to consult growers in your area to find what vines work best. Different plants are suited to different climates. It’s important to know what works and what doesn’t so that you don’t spend a great deal of time, effort, and money attempting to grow a palm tree in New Hampshire. Local growers know the community, the soil, and the climate and are perfectly suited for giving you the advice that you need.

So next time you are driving by the greenhouse, take a few minutes to stop and wander. You can look at the flowering plants sitting side-by-side in their plastic trays. You can see the vegetable plants starting to sprout. These plants are nice to have in a garden. The flowers look pretty and the vegetables taste excellent. But don’t overlook one of the most fun plants of all time – the vine.

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