Q&As/Climbers/Wisteria

Question

I have a wisteria vine that for 36 years did not flower, I have great patience. Last year I had flowers on it and I was thrilled. However, all the vines have taken over and I need to do something with them, so could you please tell me what I should do?

Answer

Firstly we must acknowledge your patience, 36 years is an amazing amount of time to wait for flowers! It’s good to hear you have finally seen some on the plant. The secret to a vigorous flowering wisteria is to promote the older flowering wood. You can do this by removing the bulk of the smaller (less than pencil width) growth that appears all over the wisteria bush every growing season - particularly at the base of the plant. If you want well balanced flowering, you will need to train a number of main leaders (shoots) in the direction you want them to grow. These should be attached firmly to a house, fence or structure to support them. Shorten back the growth appearing from these main leaders to approximately 20cm at the end of the growing season. As the climbers mature, black buds will appear on these lateral growths which are an indication of your flowers forming. During the summer growth period, regularly remove long, thin tangling growth to encourage the plant to put its energy into flowers instead of foliage. After flowering at the end of the season, remove old flower heads and allow the main leaders to grow and extend where required. If you have soil that is poor nutritionally or is dry, it’s a good idea to mulch around your wisteria plant with Daltons Compost, and add a layer of Daltons Garden Mulch & Grow on top.

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