Trellis Plants: Basic Varieties

Cluster of purple Rosemoor Clematis growing on trellis in late summer.

Trellis plants can enhance the look of your landscaping by adding height and altitude. And the trellis itself is a decorative feature. There are many species of plants that will grow around your trellis quickly and beautifully. Since flower blossoms are attractive and alluring, all of the described species climb and bloom, making them a great choice for your trellis.

TIP: Our expert gardening advisor, Karen Thurber adds, "It is important to choose a trellis which will support the vine you choose to grow. Take in to consideration how large the plant will get and how quickly it grows. Vines like morning glory are annuals in climates that receive a frost, and can be grown on a small trellis. Wisteria, on the other hand, can live for many years and will become a heavy plant which will require a strong, solid structure."

Blue Jasmine - Blue jasmine is native to southeastern territories of the United States but is extremely adaptable to many climate zones. It is a deciduous climber that prefers moist soil in the presence of full or partial sun. It produces bright and fragrant blossoms that are bell shaped.

Blue Passion Flower - The blue passion flower produces bright blue blossoms that can grow up to 4 inches in diameter. It is often grown as an indoor plant but is also grown outdoors as an annual climber. Shelter from cold winds and provide well-drained and fertile soil.

Creeping Snapdragon - This plant can grow up to 8 feet tall and is hardy in most climate conditions. It produces beautiful deep violet, white, or light pink flowers that last for several weeks. It prefers well-drained soil and thrives in full or partial sun.

Golden Tiara - This is an extremely vigorous flowering vine that produces amazing deep yellow blossoms late in the year. It blooms in the late summer or early fall and must be pruned every spring to maintain control. Plant in full sun or partial shade and provide it with well drained and fertile soil.

Japanese Wisteria - One of the most popular plants to train to grow on a trellis, Japanese wisteria bears clusters of deliciously fragrant flowers which range in color from violet to crimson. It is an aggressive grower that adapts to almost any sun exposure. However, it must be planted in rich and fertile well-drained soil.

Morning Glory - Morning glories are an annual plant which produce vibrant funnel shaped blossoms that are bright blue in color. This plant is fairly hardy and does not require extremely fertile soil. It should be trained to climb the trellis early in its life and should be sheltered from extremely cold temperatures. Beware: the seeds of the Morning Glory are toxic and should not be consumed under any circumstances.

Rosa Mermaid - This climbing rose can grow over 20 feet tall and bears large golden blossoms yearly. It must be planted in well-drained and fertile soil with full sun. Its fragrant flowers attract beneficial insects and beautiful butterflies. It is an excellent choice if you wish to have a perennial plant grow on your trellis for years to come.

Trumpet Creeper - This plant blooms late in the year and produces yellow or red flowers shaped like trumpets. It is alluring once established. however it may take several years of growth before it blossoms. Trumpet creeper easily climbs any trellis and can be trained to conform to any shape.

It is important to regularly train any plant you choose for your trellis to grow around the trellis by bending any new growth into the scaffolding of the structure.

TIP: Karen suggests, "Consider growing a fruiting vine on your trellis. Grapes and black raspberries are easy, delicious and rewarding to grow."