garden

Wisteria Saga Continues

My wisteria vine was doing such a fine job.  I was getting to know her so well.  After years of waiting for her to bloom, I did a little reading and realized I had never pruned her.  The year after I pruned her, she bloomed.  Just a few, but they were gorgeous!  The following year, I was ready for a banister full of blooms, until a late frost took care of all the promising buds.

I got her to climb the railing of the steps that lead from our yard to our deck.  She did well as our “privacy keeper”, as our yard is ever so close to the neighbor’s.

She has tried to provide housing for a few of my fine feathered friends – but it’s all about location, location, location.  The leaves and branches appeared to provide protection, but the nest was much too close to the steps and the eggs made a convenient snack for some lucky predator.

Last summer, we decided to finally attach the pool to the main deck with a pool deck, and having a deck on the pool is great.  Traipsing through the yard to climb up the ladder, then climb down the ladder into the pool was getting a bit daunting.

And I could never figure out how to clean the pool without actually getting in, which wasn’t such a bad thing.  Until closing time.  We usually wait until mid September (ie temps in the low 70s or upper 60s) to formally close her down.  Bit chilly in there!  Now with the new deck, I’ll be able to clean without necessarily getting wet!

I’ve never been good about “before” pictures.  However, I did find a couple of shots of the garden areas around the deck that I took back in 2009.  If you look closely, you can see the wisteria climbing up the railing in these shots.

 

 

The construction of the new deck meant new footers had to be poured.  And one of those footers meant the wisteria had to be trimmed – severely.  The workers must have thought I was crazy, I was more worried about the shape they were going to leave the wisteria in than I was about the outcome of the deck project!

One nice thing about the wisteria, she’s very forgiving.  Here’s a look at her today – after all she’s been through, she’s looking pretty healthy.

 

And I promise to get some great pictures once she blooms again!

 

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flowers, garden, pruning

Pruning a clematis

My clematis, a jackmanii variety, has been growing wild for about 10 years.

Clematis

I trim it back to the ground in the fall, and it successfully regenerates itself each spring.  I train it on a trellis to reach the height of the mailbox in the mailbox garden.  I’m pretty sure the mailman would appreciate some pruning efforts on this one!

I found an excellent guide for pruning most types of clematis.  Raymond Evison describes three ways to prune, depending on the variety as well as the results you are looking to achieve.  This is the suggested procedure for pruning my jackmanii –

PruningClematis

Here’s a specimen that climbs the trellis to add the height in the lamp post garden.  I train it up a small trellis then attach some twine to the post for the tendrils that climb even higher.

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This year, I’ve noticed many clematis in the neighborhood that appear to be more tame than mine, and I rather like that look.  They may be younger specimens, but I’m hoping that a little pruning care will tame my wild boys just a bit.