The Garden Guide

Book: Colour schemes for the flower garden
Chapter: Chapter 13 Climbing plants

Climbing plants on walls

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It is, like all other matters of garden planning, a question of knowledge and good taste. The kind of wall or house and its neighbouring forms are taken into account and a careful choice is made of the most suitable plants. For my own part I like to give a house, whatever its size or style, some dominant note in wall-planting. In my own home, which is a house of the large cottage class, the prevailing wall-growths are Vines and Figs in the south and west, and in a shady northward facing court between two projecting wings, Clematis montana on the two cooler sides, and again a Vine upon the other. At one angle on the warmer side of the house, where the height to the eaves is not great, China Roses have been trained up, and Rosemary, which clothes the whole foot of the wall, is here encouraged to rise with them. The colour of the China Rose bloom and the dusky green of the Rosemary are always to me one of the most charming combinations. In remembrance of the cottage example lately quoted there is Pyrus japonica {Chaenomeles speceosa} under the long sitting-room window. I remember another cottage that had a porch covered with the golden balls of Kerria japonica, and China Roses reaching up the greater part of the low walls of half timber and plastering; the pink Roses seeming to ask one which of them were the loveliest in colour; whether it was those that came against the silver-grey of the old oak or those that rested on the warm-white plaster. It should be remembered that of all Roses the pink China is the one that is more constantly in bloom than any other, for its first flowers are perfected before the end of May, and in sheltered places the later ones last till Christmas.