Wistaria (also Wisteria) for a beautiful spring display

This family of climbers certainly sets the scene on a trellis/fence at this time of year. Wistarias are great value. As well as beautiful blooms in spring you also get lush green leaves over the summer months followed by a great display of yellow autumn foliage. Wistaria are mostly used as climbers and also make great container plants. Most of the wistarias fall into 2 categories-

Wistaria sinensis-types : overall smaller flower length-around 30-40cm and come in a range of colours. They flower very early in their life-which is good because you don't have to wait a long time to get a beautiful display.

Wistaria floribunda-types : extremely long flowers, they can even grow up to 1.0 metre long. There are also a good range of colours available with a slightly longer waiting period before you get your first lot of flowering.

Wistarias produce flowers on 2 year old wood, so don't be disappointed if you see your wistaria grow a lot the first year and not give you much flower, in the second year you will start to get a good floral display.

I find that people get themselves into trouble with wistarias in their garden when they don't control growth and just let the plant wander wherever it pleases. Wistaria can grow very rapidly over the warm summer months but regularly snipping the tips of any vigorous new growths between November and March will cause the onset of more side branching and help to keep them under control.

Recently I saw in a clients garden a beautiful standard wisteria with a central stem of about 1 metre in height. It had a lovely full rounded head on top all covered in beautiful white fragrant blooms nearly hanging to the ground. It looked fantastic!!!

Graeme Burton - Landscaper - Rukuhia Homestead, RD2, Ohaupo 3882
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