Recommend a climbing plant that will cover a brick wall.
November 26, 2014 10:10 AM   Subscribe

I'm doing some pre-planning for a landscaping project next year. I have a brick wall that I would like to cover with some form of climbing ivy or the like. It is an eastern facing wall (4'w x 8'h), gets plenty of morning sunlight, located in the New York City area and would have to be planted in limited soil depth (6" or so) or a planter. I would like something that grows fast, has a long season and is a perennial. Not sure if Boston Ivy meets these goals but that look would be the ideal. Would appreciate your advice.
posted by mbx to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Passion flowers meet most of those requirements. We have one that's grown from a seedling to cover an entire wall (to the extent that I had to attack it with a hedge trimmer this autumn) in less than three years. The leaves are attractive and survive all but the harshest conditions. Flowers for about six months of the year. The orange fruit are quite attractive (although generally inedible unless you go for an edible variety).
posted by pipeski at 10:21 AM on November 26, 2014

Parthenocissus quinquefolia, or Virginia creeper, is native and provides good fall color and berries for birds. It attaches to the wall like its cousin Parthenocissus tricuspidata, Boston ivy (which is actually not native to the US), so no need for trellis or support.
Grows pretty quickly too, but easy to keep in check by pruning.
posted by scorpia22 at 10:38 AM on November 26, 2014 [1 favorite]

I had a large batch of trumpet creeper (campsis radicans) on my brick home. Apparently it attracts hummingbids but I never saw any.

My tuckpointer hated the stuff, said the tendrils will eventually wreck the mortar. Just something to keep in mind when considering creepers+brick.
posted by JoeZydeco at 12:02 PM on November 26, 2014 [1 favorite]

FYI, I had trumpet creeper get out of control at my previous house, it was popping up out of the ground 5-10 feet away from the original plant. Nice to look at, but you'll need to keep it in check.
posted by beowulf573 at 12:13 PM on November 26, 2014 [1 favorite]

I started growing hops for the cones, but they plants work well to disguise a wall.

Hops can be planted in containers but you will need some string to guide the bines since they will not cling directly to the wall. The bines should be cut to the ground each fall but easily grow 20 ft high a year. If you have pets, be aware that dogs should not consume hop cones.
posted by bCat at 2:21 PM on November 26, 2014

Where I work (just north of NYC) we have a few brick/stucco walls where we have used Boston Ivy (Parthenocissus tricuspidata) 'Fenway Park' and Silvervein creeper (Parthenocissus henryana). They work nicely as a combination of texture and color, including in the fall.
posted by sciencegeek at 3:06 PM on November 26, 2014

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