WHAT: The evergreen climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea integrifolia) is a graceful clinging vine with year-round interest.
Stout new growth emerges with bronze tones that contrast nicely with the older, deep green foliage.
WHY PLANT IT: Although this vine can be slow to reach blooming age, it is well worth the wait. In early summer, huge rounded flower buds open to an attractive lacy, white bloom reminiscent of the familiar shrubby, lacecap hydrangeas.
It is a vigorous vine and is excellent for covering unsightly retaining walls and harsh rockeries. The side branches reach out from the main trunks, creating a layered and graceful three-dimensional effect.
WHERE: It is striking when grown up tall evergreen trees. This native of Taiwan and the Philippines is one of the few vines that blooms well in shade.
It also can be used on a north-facing wall or fence. and grows well in full sun to dappled shade with well-drained to sandy soil.
Provide regular water for the best growth and flowering.
SIZE: The evergreen climbing hydrangea will eventually become a large plant, 40 feet high by 20 feet wide, so it needs space.
The vine is often slow to settle in, and it can take two to three years before it begins to grow vigorously. It is also slow to start blooming: Five to seven years may pass before it produces its first bloom.