Climbing plants are a great way to screen off parts of your garden as well as helping to merge walls and fences into the garden. However, climbers need proper planting, support and training to ensure they serve their purpose correctly. Below are a few tips to help you train the climbers in your garden.
• Before planting climbers at the foot of a wall or under a tree, use compost to improve the soil, as the soil will typically be of a poor quality in these areas of the garden. You will also need to keep the plants well watered as walls and fences will block rainfall.
• After planting, untie a new climber from the cane that holds it and spread out the stems and tie them into a fan shape so they cover the fence or wall they are to grow on.
• When looking to grow a climber up a tree or shrub, it will need to be trained to cover the whole tree, if left to itself its very likely that it will just grow up one side. To ensure even growth, lead it up to the canopy and then as it grows, divide the stems so that a few grow up each main stem.
• Tie shoots of self-clinging or twining climbers into place at first; once they are established, the new shoots will hang on for themselves. Self-clingers should be clipped over every couple of years to reduce their weight
• Tie the main stems of wall shrubs out into a fan shape over the wall or fence and tie in new stems to fill in any gaps in the framework. Prune shoots that grow outwards from the wall close to the main framework to stop the plants looking untidy.