Need MG suggestions for newbie

thahalibut(Z-9 CA, SSZ-9)September 3, 2009

A couple of weeks ago karyn1 suggested I grow MG on my fence. Can anyone suggest good ones to climb my wood 6'tall fence? I dont want any that grow out of control, I am in z9 california. min 6' max 12-14' tall. Some will have 3 hrs of mid day sun & some 6 hrs afternoon sun.



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Hi Tim,

How wide are the vertical slats for the fence, and how much space is there between the slats? How thick is each slat? If the support is too wide or thick, the vine may have difficulty wrapping around it, that's why I ask.

If you plant an annual vine, such as Ipomoea nil or I. purpurea, and (crucial point here) you collect all the seed capsules before they drop their seeds, you should have no worries of them getting out of control. It has been my experience that a purpurea makes more seeds than nil; examples of a purpurea strain are Grandpa Ott's or the hot pink one I show below. Ronnie may be able to give you pointers on a purpurea to use because she is a big fan of them.


    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 7:43AM
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thahalibut(Z-9 CA, SSZ-9)

hi Joseph, Here's a pic of the fence. I may put something on the fence to help them climb. I dont think I could collect all the seed before it dropped. So if the seeds MUST be collected before dropping, thats probably one I dont want. The california invasive plant council advised me that these are considered weedy.

Japanese morningglory Ipomoea nil & I. purpurea.

& these invasive.

Field bindweed Convolvulus arvensis
Threelobe morningglory I. triloba
Blue morningglory I. indica


    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 8:16AM
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Hi Tim AHH California growing!!

It may be a bit hard for them to wrap around that type of fence they will wind there way through the slats and be in (your neighbors yard?) That may or may not be good! LOL If you can put some sort of netting or wire on your side for them to grasp onto that would look real pretty.

Now what kind for z9 all depends on what you think is weedy! I love purpureas for the difference colors they can bring with the slightest weather change and open pollination. For myself after a few good weeks of flowers I cut mine down to all but a vine or 2 that way I don't get as many stray seeds. I am pretty diligent in spring pulling them out if I don't want them. I am going to have a lovely mix that I will be sharing soon and will post a collage of the colors I had. You are welcome to some.

Unfortunately I don't have to worry about the Japanese ones getting weedy here in cold winter Philly! I could only wish for that! I had a few last year that were very full and I gathered lots of seeds and not one came back from any dropped seeds.

I think the key to it is just a bit of careful planning and what your time allows you to do. I also have a nice purple Nil that would look good covering your fence that you are welcome too also. I can send you a pic. if you are interested.

I agree that Threelobe morning glory I. triloba is a nuisance.

Blue morning glory I. indica is a lovely plant that isn't perennial for me. It does grow by runners but again if your a diligent it is easy to pull up and you can share them with others!! It is a beauty that won't seed if you only have one variety so you don't have to worry about the seeds just the runners.

I hope I helped you a bit!!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 12:09PM
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thahalibut(Z-9 CA, SSZ-9)

I wouldn't mind them going through the slats as long as I can pull them out easy enough in the fall/winter.

I ultimately would like some that will cover up the fence the earliest in spring & have nice foliage with a longgggg bloom time throughout the summer. I really like the flowers but they are also there to cover up the fence half way to stop some reflective heat bouncing off the it.

Sounds like the Japanese may be best if it doesn't reseed itself too much. I definitely want a few different colors. If you think purple Nil will work for me, I may be interested. I see SO many different kinds I cant make a decision because I dont know HOW they grow, thats why I came here.


    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 12:39PM
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Tim most MGs from my experience here in Z6 don't really get going until mid summer and of course will only bloom in the morning. A few Japanese ones bloom a bit longer if it isn't too hot and they get a bit of shade. I will gladly send you some purple ones. I think the vines can be cut easy enough to remove them with no problem for the winter.

Here is the purple one, please note all my MGs are open pollinated to it may not be this color exactly.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 2:23PM
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thahalibut(Z-9 CA, SSZ-9)

A few will have a good amount of shade, but most will be in full morning shade & super hot full afternoon sun where every plant I have there gets burned, sometimes very bad. I was hoping a vine on the fence will help the problem.

Are MG a good choice for super hot afternoon sun, or should I find something else? How long do MG usually bloom?

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 3:12PM
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Well they will be done blooming by afternoon anyway. I have all of mine in full sun all day. Sometimes they look wilted, but by morning they perk back up.

If you get frost that's when you will loose them, if not they will probably bloom for you a lot longer than they do here. Mine start to slow down as soon as it gets cool in the morning.

You may want to look into another vine. Honeysuckle comes to is very fragrant, blooms a real long time and is perennial. There are many to choose from. Another annual vine that isn't invasive is Black eyed Susan. Tends to withstand lots of sun and is nice and cheery. some of the Clematis are nice but they like there roots shaded and cool. Although they don't flower all summer.

With you being in California some of the tropical vines would do well. Passion flower is stunning and can withstand lots and lots of heat.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 4:12PM
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thahalibut(Z-9 CA, SSZ-9)

Thanks for all the suggestions Ronnie. Too many things to chose from. I think I will try some Japanese MG, & maybe Black eyed Susan & Passion flower.


    Bookmark   September 5, 2009 at 3:15PM
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Your welcome Tim...Post pics of whatever you decide!

    Bookmark   September 5, 2009 at 4:17PM
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