Windham Life and Times – August 24, 2018

A Tribute to Flowering Vines

So I have recently become enamored with flowering vines. It used to be very common to find homes with vines trailing along the exteriors and around entrance ways. This old photograph shows the Wilson farm, in the Depot, with a variety of vines accenting the exterior of the old homestead. They certainly must have enjoyed them as much as I have!

    The reason why I have come to like flowering vines is because they are incredibly easy to grow, if you know which ones to choose. I faithfully, every summer, used to purchase morning glory vines, and in August would be bitterly disappointed with how poorly they were doing. I am happy to report there are much better choices out there! I have recently planted a vine wall which enjoys only morning sun. The vines have thrived there!

The plant that turned me on to vines is Mandevilla. I first planted them outside my office in containers and was impressed by their growth and continuous, abundant blooms.

      This summer I planted “Moonflower” vines (Ipomoea alba) along with other vines on the blank wall under my bay window. I have nurtured them, watering regularly and tying and guiding the vines as they grow upwards. Wow, the “Moonflower”  vine is voracious, covering the whole front of the wall and leading my wife to dub it the “Little Shop of Horrors” vine. That is just fine with me, because I am happy if anything I plant actually grows and thrives. After patiently waiting all summer, last night three white blooms appeared, filling the air with a beautiful fragrance. It was worth the wait.

    By far, the most spectacular vine on my wall garden is the Passion Flower vine (Passiflora) with 4,000 species. The complex blooms of the Passion Flower Vine are said to represent The Passion of Christ; the central stamen representing the cross, various parts representing the apostles, and more.  So give vine gardening a try; it’s easy, if it wasn’t, I couldn’t pull it off! Ah next year, maybe add, Climbing Snapdragon(Asarina) or Cup and Saucer Vine (Cobaea scandens) or search for a different variety of Passion Flower vine.


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