Anticipation...... a good wisteria year...!

woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)May 19, 2013

The cold, dry winter and cold wet spring seems to have had no negative effects on our wisterias. In a few days, there should be a big show going on in the front garden! Here's what things looked like this morning:

The young Japanese wisteria 'Lawrence' bloomed for the first time last spring so we were hoping for a bigger and better show this spring. It looks like that's going to happen. The leaves are just starting to emerge now:

And there are a nice collection of flowerbuds too:

The Chinese wisteria is loaded with flowerbuds, some of which are starting to show color so I expect it should be in full bloom in about two days - just when we're forecast to have several days of rain so flower-viewing could be a damp activity! :-(

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twrosz

Exciting to anticipate such a very good showing of wisteria! Please keep the photos coming if you can.

Terrance

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 6:54PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

It's ben cool here; I expected the Chinese one to be in bloom by today but it's not - maybe by Thursday.... I'm sure there'll be photos when they bloom! :-)

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 8:11PM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

hey woodyoak,

How old are your wisterias? Have you see suckers very far from base?

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 8:57AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The Chinese one was planted in late 2000 - and relocated the following spring... Its first spring bloom was in 2006 although it was producing a few summer flowers by 2003 or 2004. The Japanese one was planted in late summer 2007 and bloomed for the first time last spring. I commented on my experience with root suckers in your 'wisteria runners' thread.... suckers have not been a significant issue for us. Did you find a Wisteria floribunda 'Macrobotrys'? (did you see my last post on your thread?)

The wisterias still aren't in bloom - although the purple haze is getting stronger on the Chinese one :-) A couple of people were planning on coming by tomorrow to see them but I think we'll have to defer the visit as there won't be a lot to see! We've been 'cooler by the lake' with a vengeance this spring! That has really held them back. Yesterday it was 25C (77F) in Toronto but only 12C (54F) here. We have not had a really warm day yet this spring :-(

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 11:25AM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

Thank you woodyoak. Please don't forget to post pics here! :)

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 12:08PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The wisterias are making progress but it's definitely slower than normal! Oddly, the racemes on the north side of the Chinese one are further advanced than the ones on the south side of the tree/bush! There are even a few here and there that are partially open. This is what it looked like this morning:
The tree/bush:

A mostly open raceme:

The Japanese wisteria last spring didn't show its flowers below the leaves until the Chinese one was almost finished blooming. So the Japanese one at this point doesn't look like much as it's still in the emerging-leaves stage. It's even a bit hard to find it in all the greens in the background of this picture of the wisteria bed this morning:

If you look closely you can see the support stake for it showing through the foliage at the near end of the bed....

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 1:25PM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

Thanks for sharing the pics. Do you have a larger pic? I can't see it well.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 2:11AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Picturetrail doesn't like it when I try to upload larger files :-) Try holding down Ctrl and the + button to zoom in on the screen...? If we don't get frost in the next few days (#$@&% this weather!!) and the wisteria get to full bloom, I'll try to post better pictures....:-) We got very cold last night but it was windy enough to keep frost at bay. Tonight the wind is supposed to die down so that will make frost more likely. If I lose the flowers to frost, I will have a mega-temper tantrum!!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 10:07AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

It stayed breezy and didn't get as cold as forecast [big sigh of relief!] The Chinese wisteria is nearing peak bloom. I noticed that the new foliage on it is emerging fast - perhaps due to the cold - so now I'm fearing that the new foliage will soon obscure the flowers before they fully develop. That's what happened last year - we shortened up the tree in early spring (while we could still see the bare structure...) The tree had got too tall to easily prune so it needed cutting back. We knew we'd lose a lot of flowers because we were cutting them off but were surprised at how fast the flush of new foliage happened - it rapidly hid all the remaining flowers. You can see some of the bronzy new foliage in the picture below.

If you look closely at the center of the tree you can also see a few clematis buds on the Henyri clematis that grows into the wisteria. We planted that to produce a few flowers after the wisteria finished. The clematis has a tough time competing with the wisteria but it does produce a sparkle of white which is all we were aiming for.

The individual flowers on the racemes are not all open yet but they are pumping out lots of fragrance now. There was a light breezh wafting by the tree this morning when I was taking the pictures. There were waves of heavenly scent rolling off the flowers! While Chinese wisteria is commonly described as having all the flowers on the raceme open at once, they actually open from the base to the tip as do the Japanese ones. The shorter racemes of the Chinese wisteria makes it seem like they (normally!) all open fast together. This cold weather that has slowed down the blooming has also made it really obvious that the individual flowers do open in succession:

The Japanese wisteria blooms about a week later so it's not looking too showy at the moment:

A closer look shows the flowerbuds are extending fast so there is a nice show in the offing for this one too I think.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2013 at 12:06PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The flowers opened substantially overnight. Compare this picture to the the last one of the Chinese wisteria above... The fragrance out there this morning was amazing!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2013 at 1:52PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The wisteria bed this evening:

More frost in the forecast for tonight!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2013 at 5:26PM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

Beautiful!!!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2013 at 11:29PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The show doesn't last for long - the Chinese one's flowers are usually just a puddle of purple on the ground by the first few days of June! In this picture from early this afternoon you can see how fast the new bronzy foliage is appearing, which signal the begining of the end of the spring flowers:

So now our attention shifts to the Japanese one. The flower racemes have extended and some are showing signs of color. It looks like we should get a nice show from this one too this year.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2013 at 3:27PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The Chinese wisteria is fading fast as the new foliage emerges... Soon, the frequent pruning starts! You can see that the foliage is starting to dominate in this picture taken from the front porch this afternoon.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2013 at 5:59PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

We're still learning how to prune the Japanese wisteria - which flowered for the first time last sping - to display its flowers best in the tree-form we're growing it in. Last spring it only had a few flowers and displayed them adequately - dangling underneath the foliage as expected. This year there are both more flowers and more foliage because it is a bigger plant. The flowers were not displaying well and it finally dawned on me this morning that some extensive foliage pruning was required! A 'duh' moment.... :-)

Before pruning this morning:

After pruning:

Now I have to give some thought to the pruning for the rest of the summer to start to develop a second tier of flowers above this one....!

It's easy to see now why Japanese ones are the recommended type for pergolas - the pergola structure would keep all the foliage on top, allowing the flowers to dangle through without being obscured by any foliage. Clearly the tree-form will require more careful pruning to achieve the same effect.

The Chinese wisteria is starting to fade as the foliage develops. The flowers are starting to fall now - a noticeable amount of purple debris starting to collect on the ground under the tree.... But there is still enough color to make an impressive show of both wisterias in the bed this morning:

    Bookmark   May 31, 2013 at 12:39PM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

Beautiful Wisteria!!!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2013 at 2:45AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

The Chinese wisteria has reached the final stage of the spring show - the puddle of purple at its base as the flowers drop - it looks like this tonight:

It will produce a secondary summer bloom in late July into August as we prune off the new whippy growths. The summer bloom is much sparser, with smaller, darker flowers. But it's nice to have the blooms that do appear.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2013 at 7:49PM
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v1rtu0s1ty(5a)

I saw the flowers of Amethys Wisteria today at Plant Hill Nursery. The flowers are beautiful!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2013 at 2:04AM
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