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Does this vine-covered archway in the United Kingdom inspire you?

A brand new fence, trellis, arbor or pergola is a thing of beauty. Plus, it has that great smell of freshly cut wood.

But after you stare at it for a while, you realize it looks sort of bare. It needs a necklace — or some other accessory.

Why not a living accessory? Pretty up your garden structure in no time with a beautiful climbing plant. Climbers not only enhance the beauty of your structure; they also fill the summer air with fragrance, provide shade and screen unsightly views.

Here are a few pointers to help you select the climbing plant that’s right for your landscape structure.

First, Do Your Research

Research a plant before you get bewitched by its beauty at the garden center. Each plant has qualities and needs to consider:

  • Wisteria produces beautiful blooms, but they attract bees. Seat your dinner guests beneath a bee-covered arbor and even your famous bleu-cheese chicken wings won’t cheer them up.
  • Twining vines, such as clematis, jasmine, wisteria and morning glories, spiral upward, looping well around poles, latticework or fences.
  • Roses, bougainvillea, and sweet peas are sprawling plants that need to be tied to a trellis, especially when getting started.
  • Place scented varieties of vines near doors and windows to better enjoy the fragrance.
  • Look for seed- or fruit-producing vines to attract more wildlife to your yard or to produce an edible crop. Plucking your own grapes from your backyard arbor? You’ve arrived!

Oh, The Possibilities…


A few varieties of climbing plants to consider:


This queen of the climbers comes in a wide array of choices. Some are evergreen, flowering in early spring, while most are deciduous and flower in the summer. Great for growing through trees and other climbing plants.


A fast-growing twining climber, this will need annual hard pruning to keep tidy. It produces wonderfully scented flowers during the summer months. Can grow in sun or shade.

Climbing Hydrangea

Climbing hydrangea

A self-clinging climber with dark green leaves, it produces domed clusters of white flowers in the summer. It sprawls, so give it lots of room.


A party for your nose. These sweetly scented flowers will quickly cover an arch or trellis. Grows best in sun.


There’s a rose for every spot in the garden, including pretty climbers for trellises and arbors. So many colors and types, some with knock-your-sandals-off scents.

Perennial Sweet Pea

This climbing perennial has winged stems and blue-green leaves with pretty white, pink or red flowers from summer to early autumn. Great for growing against a trellis or through an obelisk.

Neave Can Build — and Plant!

Neave Group has a carpentry division to design, build and install your trellis, arbor or pergola, and a landscaping division to provide the plants to cover them.

We offer our New York and Connecticut clients the highest level of customer satisfaction in design, construction, and maintenance.

Sagging deck? Leaning fence? Our professional construction teams can also swoop in to refurbish your existing fences, decks or outdoor structures.

Once Neave Carpentry cleans up the sawdust, Neave Landscaping experts can help you choose just the right climbing plants to dress up your structure.

Ready to Get Started? Give Us a Call

If you’re in the Hudson Valley, call us at (845) 463-0592. If you’re in Westchester County, call (914) 271-7996; from Connecticut, dial (203) 212-4800. Or, fill out our simple web form, and we’ll contact you about setting up your free consultation.

Grab a good book and chill the iced tea. You’ll be relaxing beneath your vine-covered pergola in no time.

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Image credits: Archwayclematisclimbing hydrangeas

landscape planning guide neave group cover

FREE Landscape Planning Guide

Download our FREE Landscape Planning Guide and start planning the landscape of your dreams!

Download Now