WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER GROW VINES
A VINE WHINE. I won’t be planting any more, and if any of my friends talk about putting them in I immediately go on a rant about their beauty versus the work they create. Gorgeous yes, as in the case of our wonderful wisteria, but it is constantly trying to pull the house apart and is desperate to go off exploring the countryside.
There’s one exception: if you can get around the base of vines and consistently control the runners with a lawn mower or loppers, for the entire life of the plant, then go ahead and plant one. It’s the runners that cause the problem, and we have an interwoven network under the verandah and house which I have to chop back every year.
The other thing about vines is that if – and obviously it’s a big ‘if’ – I were to plant more, I would train them up and along a chain that was detachable from the house. That way, when maintenance needs to be done on the house, the vine can be laid down. The vine could also be taken down annually to disconnect any tendrils that have tried to start investigating inside the cladding.
Keeping on top of pruning is also a necessity. Each year during the winter clean-up of the garden, I hack back the wisteria and the jasmine so growth is controlled. The biggest challenge, as with many things, is being consistent. tomatoes beans peppers corn yams pumpkin zucchini salad greens peas silverbeet carrots parsnips potatoes anything else you would like to grow and eat