Can anyone recommend a showy vine with fragrance to substitute for Wisteria?
Criteria looking for with the vine is one not plagued with a lot of insect pest or disease problems, not requiring high maintenance (limited to 1-2 pruning sessions a year, fertilizing), will go up and over a pergola, strikingly showy for at least one season (a plus if showy additional seasons), not an eyesore at any time of the year. Not invasive. Attractive fragrance preferable.
Cultural conditions of the site are Zone 9a, full sun, alkaline high PH soil. Soil thin 2" topsoil layer over compacted limerock, will be bermed with quality topsoil and composts. Planting site readily drains from rain event but 15' away from edge of freshwater river canal. Planting site does sit several feet higher than water level. This vine will be going into a Japanese Garden.
Can anyone think of a vine that meets the above? Thank you all in advance for the help!
Up and over a pergola: I have confederate jasmine and Carolina jamine. Never had any pests problems in 4 years. Fragrant while blooming. Never an eyesore any time of year. Could be pruned to shape but I let mine go wherever they want. It is not invasive and has never moved to another space in the yard. Has climbed my fence and thickened beautifully. Gets fertilizer once a year. Drought tolerant. Very easy keeper.
I have a Queens Wreath vine on the front of my fence. It does not have a scent; however, it has the purple cascading flowers like Wisteria. I have never fertilized mine and pruning seems to make it grow more. It stays green here in SW Florida through the winter. I have had people actually stop and ask if it was Wisteria.
Forgot about that one. Here its called Queen's bower and it sure does resemble wisteria. I have 2 but cold froze them back to the gorund one year and they are still trying to recover. One is now about 4 feet and the other is about 3. Only had 1 cascading bloom this year but hope they will keep growing and have more blooms next year as they are really beautiful.
Another beautiful vine that growes very high is blue sky vine but it does die back to the ground during our winters up here. Right now my 2 are up over my roof line and I'm looking forward to their beautiful blue blooms.
I had the blue sky vine at our other house planted and growing up my pergola. The first year it made it up to the top and to the middle, the next year the pergola was almost covered. It is a beautiful vine as well. I plan to plant one of these here as well as it is one of my favorites. Last year everywhere I went they were sold out!
The Queen's Wreath can get heavy. I have mine planted on my reinforced chain link and the stem has grown around the links. I guess it would depend on how strong your fence is. When we installed the chain link, my husband knew that I would be planting on it and asked that it be reinforeced to hold vines.
I planted Sky Vine in a front bed about 4 or 5 years ago. We had 2 really hard freeze years and the Sky Vine comes up faithfully the first out of the ground. Although my yard looks unkempt, the red hibiscus, Sapphire Pigeon Berries, and deep purple Sky Vine does put some color in the beds. ;)
I had sky vine in Ft. Myers zone 10. It was nothing if not impressive, BUT It will lose its leaves if it gets hit by frost. I never fed mine, but it was the vine that wanted to bury our house. Made me think of Kudzu :) It's growth was incredible. I would cut it to 1 foot above the ground in Spring and by summer's end it was back to looking for a way through our door. Depending on where you are, I would not call it low maintenance. I'm sure others have different experience with it but this was mine.
I had better experience with a lovely red passion vine. It covered our entire 5 foot high 40 foot long wire fence in the back, rarely lost leaves, bloomed gorgeous red flowers no fruit and attracted lots of butterflies. It took 2/3 years, but there was no stopping it!
The well behaved evergreen wisteria does not have a fragrance but it is beautiful and underused. One comment in PF said it had a bad odor but i have never noticed that. There is also a M. taiwanese cultivar.
Top-dressing with compost would be best. Second best alternative is a general balanced fertilizer with micros in which all the elements are coated for slow release, for example Osmocote Plus. Many of the fertilizers proclaim they are slow release (or the equivalant) on the front label, but look at the analysis on the back and you find out the fertilizer barely qualifies. Analysis reveals the only slow release element in the fertilizer is a small percentage of the nitrogen. Many of the fertilizers out there are in a false advertising gray area. Always check out the analysis on the back label because the information in the analysis is required by law- not just what is stated, but also how it is stated, so the fertilizer company doesn't have the wriggle room for the misleading info it can put on the front of the package. I'll get off my soapbox now:)
LOL, but remember, Osmocote Plus is "timed" release and should last about 6 months, a big difference from "slow" release which will release a quick burst of nitrogen and the remaining nutrients will slowly disolve over 9 - 12 weeks depending on the temperature and moisture.
That quick burst of nitrogen is from the percentage of that element that is immediately soluble- not coated for slow release. Check that label. If only a percentage of the nitrogen is coated for slow release, the remaining nutrients (if any) are typically not slow release at all.
Slow release is enabled due to a polymer coating. Different companies have their own "technology". Some details vary but the basics are more similar than they'd like to admit.
BTW, Osmocote Plus is available in various months' formulations- 3 month, 6 month, 9 month.
Hey...I'm just passing thru.
I wish I had a fence...and it was filled with Wisteria...or anything for that matter!
When I lived in Homosassa, my DH had a beatiful Brown Bud Amidilla (sp). Every year it would freeze back to the ground and I would be afraid that it would not come back up again...but it did. I never see it out here. Neighbors would stop and admire his flower. I miss him and the plant! Come visit me in the Southwest Forum. Jo
Welcome to the forum. Have 2 queens wreaths and neither is invasive. Actually I have a heck of a time keeping them living. Cold seems to put them behind ea. year but they are trying hard this year. Can't wait until I get a year with some blooms as they are beautiful. Clusters of blue/lavender that hand down like wisteria.