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How do I Encourage Plants to Climb?

At some point, we’ve all seen the beauty of a climbing plant like clematis, ivy, rambling roses, Virginia creepers, and wisteria and thought, ‘Boy, I’d like to do something like that for my home!’ Whether you’re starting your climbing plant journey or struggling to train them to do their thing, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:


Prepare for Planting

Pick a spot with excellent soil conditions for your plant to receive an adequate amount of sun while also looking gorgeous where it’s proudly displayed. Then choose your climber’s support: taut wires, free-standing screens, weaves, fences, stakes, arches, trellises, obelisks, cages, or directly onto a wall. You could even get thrifty and use the trunk of a tree you’ve been growing! Once you’ve designated a spot and chosen your plant and support, be sure to plant with a little space from the support to prevent a rain shadow.

Support the Growth

Twine any new or existing stems with split training canes along your support, making sure they don’t get tangled as you go and that they follow the direction you desire. Once your plant begins to outgrow the canes, carefully cut off the twine to all them to grow out naturally to the support. For longer or more straightforward supports like walls, the canes might need to stay for a while and perhaps get switched out for longer canes. You’ll want to then let your plant grow naturally and fan it out over the shape of your support.

Wisteria on an Archway


Now that your climber has taken shape with its new home, you’ll want to maintain it to ensure it continues to grow beautifully and healthy. Water and prune your chosen plant as needed, and tie in any new additions with supportive canes to get them trained to grow with the rest of their family.

When making design choices, consider contrasting your plants with a colorful support, using climbers to visually link different sections of your yard or garden, or creating a living feature wall. Feel free to research and explore what kind of climbing plant you want, but be sure it’s not an invasive species like honeysuckle – it’ll take over more than you want!

At Burger Farm and Garden Center, we want to equip everyone with the tools and knowledge to make their plants, lawn, and garden beautiful and healthy. Learn more and visit us today at burgerfarms.com.