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  1. #1

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    Question Question about growing wisteria...

    Does anyone here have wisteria in their yard/garden? I have been wanting one for some time now, and finally bought one at the nursery today. I bought the Blue Moon variety, because it does well in cold winter weather (I live in northern Utah.)

    The thing that is worring me is that it needs full sun, and my condo only gets full morning sun. I wonder how much this will affect it's growth? Even though I'm literally a farmer's daughter, I don't have much of a green thumb, so I'm wondering how hardy wisteria really is, and does it seem to thrive easily?
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    I had a good friend that had some, and had to cut it back, every year. Seemed to be a very hardy and agressive grower.

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    Morning sun is probably sufficient for Wisteria, we have neighbors that grow it in part sun and its grows vigorously and blooms well. My concern is more if can be contained in a pot on a condo. Wisteria is huge and aggresive, my cousin likens hers to the horror movies that her husband likes to watch...it sends out these huge claw-like tendrils in advance of swallowing up sections of her fence

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    I miss Desperate Housewives. :

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by FunnyBut View Post
    Morning sun is probably sufficient for Wisteria, we have neighbors that grow it in part sun and its grows vigorously and blooms well. My concern is more if can be contained in a pot on a condo. Wisteria is huge and aggresive, my cousin likens hers to the horror movies that her husband likes to watch...it sends out these huge claw-like tendrils in advance of swallowing up sections of her fence
    I have a patch of soil where I am going to plant it. I wish it could be potted.
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  6. #6
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    I have a wisteria plant next to the shed in my yard. This is the second shed on that same site. The previous one was falling down (I think toward the end it was the wisteria that was holding it up) and the wisteria survived the old shed being demolished and a new one being constructed, which included it being tramped on, having lumber piled on top of it, etc. I don't think you need to worry about it being hardy

    The wisteria is on the west side of the shed, so it gets afternoon sun, and that is partially filtered through trees and a laurel hedge. And it does just fine. Yours may not grow as much in partial sun as it would in full sun, but I think as long as it gets some direct sun at some point during the day, it will do fine.
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    Wisteria in the south goes beserk. I've seen it cover acres of forest, killing the trees. It's like kudzu. We have 2 plants, and it's been a struggle to keep it from taking over our trees. It puts out underground roots and tendrils, and it pops up unexpectedly in odd places. I wish I hadn't planted it now, because it doesn't bloom very much. Light could be an issue for me. But it's a battle to keep it from the trees. Our property borders the national forest, and I sure don't want it getting in there.

  8. #8
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    Wisteria?

    DON'T. DO. IT!!!

    It can grow several inches a day and is extremely difficult to contain. Unless you like being out in your yard every day hacking away at plants, I'd pick something else.

    Also avoid bamboo.

  9. #9
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    Our neighbours behind us planted them along our shared fence, and they have now overgrown a 100-year-old lilac and a lovely white blossomed tree, completely eliminated a large forsythia bush, and are starting to topple a 3-storey high cedar hedge next door to her.

    On our side, we hack away at it to protect our lilacs and try to give the white blossomed tree some airspace over our yard as it desperately tries to get out from under the wisteria. I'm amazed the people with the hedge haven't noticed what's happening, but maybe the wisteria is so thick on their side they don't realize the hedge is being pulled down. The creepers have extended into several other yards now as well.

    We're moving in 2 weeks, so no longer our problem, but it's only a matter of time before the wisteria wins the war.

    Agree with agalisgv - unless you are committed to tending to it daily - don't do it. And whatever you do, have the courtesy to keep it away from your neighbours' properties.

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    Quote Originally Posted by agalisgv View Post
    Wisteria?

    DON'T. DO. IT!!!

    It can grow several inches a day and is extremely difficult to contain. Unless you like being out in your yard every day hacking away at plants, I'd pick something else.

    Also avoid bamboo.
    Ditto. The only way to keep it under control is to plant it in the middle of an open expanse where it can't attach to anything and keep it pruned back as a tree. My parents did this and it's fine, but I think you are going to be very unhappy with this at a condo.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    Ditto. The only way to keep it under control is to plant it in the middle of an open expanse where it can't attach to anything and keep it pruned back as a tree. My parents did this and it's fine, but I think you are going to be very unhappy with this at a condo.
    I'm going to agree with those who say not to do it. Wisteria has a number of survival tactics (underground roots, surface vines, aerial vines, woody seed pods, huge hard seeds) and they are all fool proof. It is only stimulated by pruning. I would study the situation and consider other vines.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by agalisgv View Post
    Wisteria?

    DON'T. DO. IT!!!

    It can grow several inches a day and is extremely difficult to contain. Unless you like being out in your yard every day hacking away at plants, I'd pick something else.

    Also avoid bamboo.
    I couldn't agree more. My neighbor has it but it grows up the side of her pergula so it doesn't encroach on either side. However, it makes a mess on her patio - the birds & squirrels love it & the dead blossoms drip on the concrete. And I don't think the blossoms are all that pretty close up...YMMV.

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    Wisteria is very invasive, I wouldn't plant it in the ground. Ditto for mint, bamboo, kudzu/gingko and english ivy. If you have siding on your shed/house, Wisteria can and will snake underneath to bend/rip off the boards as it grows. It kills trees and bushes by strangling it - my mother used to call it a "strangler vine." (The wild Wisteria that attacked her beloved crab-apple tree never bloomed, , but it was a PITA to get rid of - we had to dig it up and put down weed killer, leaving the plot empty for over two years. Almost lost the tree.)

    It does smell lovely, though, so if you really want to grow it, use a big planter box to keep it contained. If it has holes at the bottom for drainage, put two layers of screening on the bottom to stop runners/roots from escaping and move the planter a bit now and then.

    Best advice is to check with a local nursery for local varieties of any plant. Things that are innocuous in one state can be monsters in another so a snippet from upstate NY can be a horror in SC. The nursery will only sell varieties that behave well in your climate/soil.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    Ditto. The only way to keep it under control is to plant it in the middle of an open expanse where it can't attach to anything and keep it pruned back as a tree. My parents did this and it's fine, but I think you are going to be very unhappy with this at a condo.
    I have a condo neighbor that has a Japanese wistera. It is quite old, but has been pruned back as a tree. Somehow, it hasn't gotten out of control at all. It's lovely and smells wonderful. I'm going to try mine in a big planter box. I don't mind the pruning and work that will go into it. I don't have any other plants, except for succulents, and they don't take up any of my time.
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    I have a Blue Moon Wisteria, it is trained to fill a pergola. I live in southern Wisconsin. The winter here kills it back. I've had it 10 years. It is in partial shade with mostly morning to early afternoon sun.

    As I said, I've had no problems, but I could see it taking over the universe if it wasn't trained to something and clip off the escapees!

  16. #16

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    If you live in Utah, your Wisteria shouldn't get out of control. I have one on a trellis off the front porch, and it's gorgeous as well as perfectly manageable. We get snow every winter here, and I think that keeps it from running wild.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by nubka View Post
    I have a patch of soil where I am going to plant it. I wish it could be potted.
    I have two Wisteria in pots. They get too rambunctious in the ground. They do fine in pots.
    I guess the hard thing for a lot of people to accept is why God would allow me to go running through their yards, yelling and spinning around.


  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozzisk8tr View Post
    I have two Wisteria in pots. They get too rambunctious in the ground. They do fine in pots.
    How big are the pots, and how tall is your wisteria? I'm going to have to buy something this weekend...
    Nubka - Unpaid Slave Laborer...

  19. #19

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    Thumbs up

    BTW, thanks everyone, for your posts. I do feel more confident now!
    Nubka - Unpaid Slave Laborer...

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by nubka View Post
    How big are the pots, and how tall is your wisteria? I'm going to have to buy something this weekend...
    Pots are about 3.5 feet long x 16 inches wide and about 14 inches deep... ish.
    It's about 6 foot high but growing rather wide. It takes up between 8 and 10 feet in width. I have to get quite brutal when it needs a hair cut.
    I guess the hard thing for a lot of people to accept is why God would allow me to go running through their yards, yelling and spinning around.


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