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If you’re looking to add year-round interest to your garden, then an evergreen plant is absolutely the way forward.
Not only will evergreen plants help provide your garden with colour on even the bleakest of winter days, but they are also really good for adding extra structure to your garden. And if it’s colour and structure that you’re after, you definitely can’t go wrong with an evergreen climber!
Evergreen climbing plants are a great way to mask an unsightly wall or fence, and are also great for scrambling up pergolas or crawling up the side of a house in order to get that cottage garden look.
Available in a wide range of shapes, colours and sizes to suit any garden, evergreen climbers are also really good if you’d like to encourage more wildlife into your garden, and can provide both a source of food for birds and insects, as well as a safe space to set up home.
However, when you’re looking for an evergreen climbing plant for your garden, there can be some confusion over which one to go for, and the many different names and varieties can often leave you scratching your head and wondering if you’re making the right choice.
So, to help take the confusion out of it, we’ve put together a list of our favourite evergreen climbers along with a handy buying guide that’s jam packed with hints and tips on what to look out for when it comes to finding the right variety for your garden.
If you’re in a hurry and want to find the perfect evergreen climber, take a look at our top pick below.
In a hurry? This is our winner!
Best Evergreen Climbers – Comparison Table
Best Evergreen Climbers – Reviews
Best Evergreen Climbers – Buyer’s Guide
Whatever reason you’re looking to incorporate an evergreen climber into your planting scheme for, one thing is for certain – you need to make sure that it will be happy and healthy growing in the position you choose for it.
You’ll also want to make sure that your plant will fully cover the area you want it to, and that it will give you the full effect you’re after.
To help you make sure you choose the right variety of plant, and to take some of the guesswork out of it, we’ve put together a list of points that you should give some consideration to before settling on your final decision. Going through each of these will not only ensure that you make the perfect choice for your garden, but will also help you pick a plant that will provide you with everything you want from it.
The first thing that you’ll want to consider when buying an evergreen climbing plant is what colour it is, and whether or not it will fit into any existing colour scheme that you have in your garden. Remember that just because a plant is referred to as ‘evergreen’, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s leaves will be green in colour.
In fact, there is a wide variety of colour to choose from and some evergreen varieties even have leaves that will change colour as they react to the seasons. These are great choice for keeping continued interest in your garden, even in the colder months, as well as providing permanent structure.
Another thing to bear in mind when looking at colour, is what colour the flowers will be when they begin to bloom as you may also want them to match with the theme and colours your garden already has.
When you’re considering the colour of the flowers that your evergreen climber produces, you may also want to give some thought as to whether or not you’d like them to emit any fragrance.
Honeysuckle is a fantastic choice if you’d like a fragranced climber, and will fill the air with a sweet scent all summer long. It’s also a much loved flower by bees and other pollinating insects, so is a great option to go for if you’d like to encourage more wildlife into your garden as well.
If you’re not particularly bothered about your climbing plants carrying a fragrance, then clematis is usually a very good plant to go for. Although some varieties of clematis do produce scent, the majority of them are unscented but will still be able to provide a source of food for bees.
If you’re choosing an evergreen climber to cover an unsightly wall or to climb up a tree, a good thing to check is the amount of space it will cover in both height and width. By checking this, you can make sure that you’re getting the right amount of coverage you need, and it also gives you the opportunity to purchase more than one plant if you’re looking to cover a wider area.
Take some time to consider the position of the area you’ll be growing your evergreen climber in as well. Different plants require different conditions, and choosing a variety that require full sun and placing it in a shady spot will cause the plant to grow very slowly.
To make things a little clearer, any area that has full sunshine for the majority of the day is considered to be ‘full sun’. Climbers such as Jasmine and Honeysuckle will do best in these conditions.
If the area you’re covering sees the sun for only part of the day (around 4-6 hours) then choose a climber that will be happy in partial shade such as a passionflower. And, if you’re covering a wall or a fence that is in constant shade, a climber like Ivy would be your best bet as it will tolerate being planted in full shade.
Keep your soil type in mind as well before you pick your climbing plant. Most evergreen climbers are happy growing in a variety of soils, as long as they are well drained, but if you have a very thick, clay soil in your garden, you’ll want to incorporate some horticultural grit into the planting hole before planting.
Likewise, if you’re planning on growing your climbing plant in a pot, then you should make sure that there are drainage holes in the bottom and that the compost you’ve chosen is appropriate for the plant you’re growing.
If you’d like to encourage more wildlife into your garden, an evergreen climber can help you achieve this quite easily. Again, it’s just a case of making sure that you’re picking the correct variety.
Bees are drawn to specific colours of flower, such as purple or yellow, as they can see them clearly with their ultraviolet light vision. So going for a climber that produces flowers in this colour will certainly draw them in. As will choosing a flower that has a tubular shape, such as Honeysuckle, where they can get right into the flower and get to the large amount of pollen sitting at the base.
Ivy is one evergreen climber that is particularly beneficial for wildlife, as it produces its flowers and berries throughout the autumn and winter. This means that, when most other plants have stopped growing for the year, Ivy offers a late source of food and pollen for birds, bees and other pollinators. It’s bushy growing habit also creates the perfect safe space for overwintering insects, and makes a great place for birds to build their nests in the spring.
Like most plants, your evergreen climber will need to be pruned occasionally in order to produce side shoots that will continue to spread and cover a wide area. Therefore, when researching which variety you’d like, take some time to find out how often it will require pruning and during which season.
This will aid you in making the correct decision if you’re looking for a more low maintenance plant that you only need to attend to once a year, or if you’re more of an avid gardener and are happy to spend more time attending to it’s pruning needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best plant for covering a wall or fence?
If you’ve got an unsightly wall or fence in your garden that you’d like to cover, then an evergreen climbing plant would be your best option. Not only will it scale the height and width of the space you’re covering with ease, but it will also provide you with year round colour so you won’t have to worry about seeing the exposed area throughout the colder months.
What does evergreen mean?
Put simply, an evergreen plant is one that keeps its leaves throughout autumn and winter, whilst deciduous trees and perennial plants will lose their foliage or die back completely. Some evergreen plants have leaves that change colour as winter kicks in, but they still stay on the plant.
What is the best evergreen climber?
This depends on your personal preference, however you’ll want to make sure that whatever variety you go for it will fully cover the space you’re attempting to conceal. Fast growing climbers such as Honeysuckle, Jasmine and Ivy are great for this. Take a look at our buyer’s guide above from some more information on what to look for in an evergreen climber.