Scaling the North Face

We’ve written before about the range of climbing plants that envelop the walls here at Genus HQ.  One such plant that we rarely see in other gardens is Schizophragma hydrangeoides (pictured) often known as the Japanese hydrangea vine.  It’s a well behaved deciduous climber that scales our north facing walls by the use of aerial roots enabling it to make progress over the smooth limestone without the aid of wires or additional support.

Its beautiful flowers are  made up of sterile florets surrounded by a ring of long lasting bracts that look stunning next to our wall-trained Philadelphus which flowers at the same time.  Though it has the potential to reach 15 or 20 metres in height we find ours to be very reserved in its growth and only now after ten years is it just reaching the single storey gutters.

We have no complicated pruning regime, it’s simply pruned out from the areas where it isn’t wanted.  Every year when July arrives this plant that asks for so little gives us two months or more of such beauty and pleasure that we may just have to create a new gap against the cottage walls to add another. 

Clothes in action today: Men's Wisley Gardening Gilet