Garden arches are great for adding an authentic, vintage style to your garden and can act as a grand entrance or an iconic focal point to a vacant space. The shape of the arbour allows for the perfect opportunity to create a relaxed threshold for your garden, decorated by flowers, vines, lights, and many more features. This article will explore the ten best climbing plants for arches in your garden and which plants you should choose to decorate your garden arch with.
We will explore the following plants:
You can use many plants to decorate your garden arch, but one thing you should consider when choosing your plants is that they are all different. Wisteria, for example, weighs heavier over time, so if you are considering adding it to your garden arch, you need to check that the structure will be capable of holding this selected climber.
Additionally, smaller details like soil changes and the direction of the sun should be considered when implementing your arch’s location, as this will determine which climbers are the best to suit how much growth they will receive from it.
Lastly, pruning your climbing plants will need to be regulated because no one likes seeing dead flower heads hanging from a beautiful garden arch. To make sure pruning is made easier on your archway, make sure the plants do not become entangled over each other like wire.
The first climbing plant that immediately comes to mind is the clematis. Clematis can be found in many colours and are easy to grow. You will discover that varieties of clematis grow mostly between early to late summer, and how much sunlight they prefer depends on the variant. The clematis stems sit comfortably around garden archways and will not easily detach themselves from it.
We recommend the Jackmanii clematis as the top pick for your garden arch.
The clue is in the name: climbing hydrangea. Although they prefer the shade and more barren areas of a garden, climbing hydrangea is a great plant to feature on your garden arch. The typical colour of hydrangeas is white, which will allow your garden arch to spring to life in the summer when the sunlight touches on the white petals.
We recommend the Anomala subsp. Petiolaris to get the best satisfactory results from your garden arch.
The properties of honeysuckle make it the perfect candidate to add to your garden arch due to its fast-growing and hardy nature.
You can gain benefits from growing honeysuckle on your garden arch, too, because the rich colours and scents that thrive from this plant will bring a tropical nature to the rest of your garden. Whether in in the sun or shade, honeysuckle will grow fast, spreading its range of colours, including white, yellow and pink.
We recommend the Serotina variant for your garden arch.
The distinct features of the ivy make it more than suitable to climb up your garden arch. With its dark and gloomy green textures, you can let ivy grow along your garden arch for the darker seasons, like in autumn, since this is when the ivy is most likely to flower.
Another great feature about growing ivy is that it can grow under most conditions without too much trouble. We recommend the Goldchild ivy plant as the most beautiful version to grow on your garden arch.
This evergreen climber, combined with a star-shaped flower head, will stand out to your friends when they see your garden arch decorated with this plant. The intense, sweet aroma of the white flowers’ blossoms between mid to late summer.
However, be aware that the star jasmine, which we recommend here, is vulnerable to severe frosts.
Fancy bringing a challenging but rewarding plant to your garden arch?
Try the morning glory (ipomoea), which is very vibrant and thrives in warm temperatures, so you are best off planting this in the summer. The clear standout with the morning glory is its pink or blue petals which stand out like tiny satellites amongst the rest of your garden flowers. It will become a radar for bees and other flying insects to visit your garden and bring the exotic, tropical nature to it, too.
Bring a colourful and bombastic plant to the rest of your garden arch with a passion flower (Passiflora) which is surprisingly easy to grow in the UK. All it needs is plenty of shelter and sunlight, the passion flower will blossom well and bring an exotic appearance to your garden arch.
Want to know something even better? Passion flowers can live through British winters too! Unique selling point!
Roses are a quintessential plant to have in your garden due to their beautiful, dark red, appearance. Roses are extremely popular for garden arch owners as they love to decorate their arch with a rose, representing Britain’s national flower.
They are also great for being more romantic with your partner for Valentine’s Day. For best results, plant a bare root rose during late autumn or winter, but not on dry or frozen ground.
We recommend the Zepherine Drouhin variant since it is thornless and easier for you to handle when attaching it to your garden arch.
Find out how to pick the perfect garden arch.
Growing sweet pea on your garden arch is a bold and classic choice, especially with how many varieties of petals are available from the flower, such as white, pink, and purple. Additionally, the reason for it being called sweet pea is due to its sweet appearance and scent of the plant, and by cutting it, you can enjoy it in your home too.
They grow fast, making them a great candidate for your garden arch, although they should be regularly pruned for dead flower heads and seed pods.
For our final beautiful climbing plant for your garden arch, we return to the plant we mentioned at the beginning of this article, the wisteria. It is a vigorous climber that emits strong-scented flowers with a hardy vine. For best results, plant the wisteria before the summer so that it can truly appreciate the sun between May and June.
We recommend the Yae-kokuryu to bring the best Wisteria styles to your garden arch.
Check out the best garden decorations available all year round
Now that we have shown you the best climbing plants for your garden arch, you should decide which ones are the best for you to grow. We recommend starting with a traditional plant like the climbing hydrangea or rose, but if you like a challenge, feel free to have a go at growing the wisteria or morning glory. There is plenty of choice and variety from our selection here, so if you are ever struggling with ideas, you can always come back here for more inspiration!
One of the favourite choices for a garden arch is the iconic British rose and Clematis. These two are very invigorating growers and therefore can adapt to the structure of a garden arch easily and seamlessly.
You can plant vines on an arch using nails, screws, and any other materials to keep the vines secure and in place. You can also connect the sides of an archway with wood or a wire lattice in order to add support from which the vines can grow on.
Ivy and climbing hydrangeas are strong enough to support their own weight, and are often recited as being self-clinging. These climbers are best for growing on walls or fence that might be less than appealing on the eye, as well as pergolas and outdoor seating areas.
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Garden Benches. (11/02/22). Garden Decorations All Year. [Accessed 05/02/23] Retrieved from: https://www.gardenbenches.com/blog/garden-decorations-all-year/
Tony Ward Furniture. (n.d.). Best Climbing Plants for Garden Arches. [Accessed 05/02/23] Retrieved from: https://www.tonywardfurniture.co.uk/blog/best-climbing-plants-for-garden-arches
Garden Arch. (n.d.). Climbing Plants for Garden Arches. [Accessed 05/02/23] Retrieved from: https://www.gardenarch.org.uk/news/climbing-plants-for-garden-arches
Royal Horticultural Society. (n.d.). Climbers. [Accessed 05/02/23] Retrieved from: https://www.rhs.org.uk/plants/types/climbers
Anna is the marketing and office manager for Garden Benches – a premium supplier of high-quality wooden benches and other outdoor furniture.