Wisteria of wisteria: The dry conditions last year have given this British favorite a boost

Wisteria of wisteria: The dry conditions last year have given this British favorite a boost

  • Nigel Colborn gave advice on growing blooming wisteria in British gardens
  • He says the plants will bloom well with warmth in almost any sunny place
  • It revealed the best strains for a sensational look in any garden

We are enjoying a busy year for wisteria. The drought last summer stressed the plants and caused them to plant more flowers than usual for this spring.

The name is reminiscent of a plant, a well-known climber with hanging stems of beautiful purple violet flowers in spring.

However, there are ten types of wisteria and more than 70 types of garden. The two most popular are the Chinese Wisteria sinensis and the Japanese W. floribunda. The earlier flowers on bare stems with leaves that develop when the flowers fade. At W. floribunda flowers and foliage usually come out together.

Rush year: The beautiful flowers of wisteria floribunda on the front of a cottage (file image)

The flower stems or & # 39; grapes & # 39; resemble giant, tapered kittens. A single blossom has the classic pea blossom formation. The five petals include a broad "standard" on the top, two "wings" on the sides and a "keel" below.

Chinese wisteria is loved because the flowers on the bare stems show so well. Japanese wisteria have longer grapes. Since they bloom later, they are less prone to late frosts.


Wisteria need sun and warmth to bloom well. A south or southwest wall is best, but they thrive in almost any sunny place.

Most wisteria can grow into a large tree. But by pruning and training, you can keep the same plants in any size – even a bonsai. With increasing age, the stems and main stems can turn like massive barley candy canes. Side shoots also become gnarled and look extremely attractive in the middle of winter.

You can train wisteria on supports or even raise them as free-standing, umbrella-shaped trees. Use a stable support post about two meters high. Young stems can be tied to the posts.

When the plant matures, let the side shoots grow, but only from the top of the plant. As these develop, save the best positioned to create your tree tops.

Training for walls or a pergola is easier. To develop the structure of the plant, arrange the best young cables evenly and tie them tight. Position them horizontally or at angles, but never vertically. Remove excess or unwanted growth in winter.

Prune for better flowering in August. Cut off any newly grown, lashing stems and let stumps with up to seven buds or leaves bloom next spring.


Among the varieties, Prolific is one of the best Chinese wisteria. The plant blooms freely even at a young age. Among the crossings, W. x valderi Burford has beautifully bronzed young leaves that trigger the soft white and deep purple sprays.

The grapes can be more than 30 cm long and when they get longer the leaves change from bronze to light green. Autumn leaves are golden yellow and fall late.

Wisteria frutescens comes from America, a large shrub and not a climber, but it can grow on a wall. The most common variety, Amethyst Falls, has tightly clustered flowers in purple lilac.

I grow W. floribunda Alba as an umbrella tree. The extra long, white flowers hang under a green leaf brolly. It is strong and needs to be trimmed strictly.

Inspired by this success, I planted a Japanese silky wisteria, W. brachybotrys Iko Yama Fuji, to build another free-standing tree. At this early stage, it's more like a curved fishing rod than an umbrella. But the massive violet flowers look sensational.


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