Flowering and edible arches are arguably among the most stylish and elegant features of a garden. Ideal for large spaces requiring a focal point of interest, over entrances to add a dramatic touch, or in small gardens where a compact cluster of blooms steals the show – arches possess an inherent charm appealing to everyone. Life is a Garden shares top arching tips and plant picks to kickstart your gardening project.
Here are a few crucial factors to consider when purchasing or building an arch:
- Take careful note of the size of the space where you intend to grow your edible or flowering arch. How much sunlight does this space receive? Is there adequate room for the plant to expand as it grows?
- Determine where your arch will be most prominent and consider your vision. Contemplate which additional accessories will complement the structure, such as a quaint table and chairs nearby for tea, garden lights along a walkway leading to the arch, or perhaps an additional flower bed surrounding the arch. Flowering arches also serve as excellent wildlife attractors and privacy shields.
- Consider the material of your arch. Some plants become heavier as they age, necessitating stronger support. If using a wooden arch, remember to apply a weather-resistant sealer that won’t harm your plant. If opting for a metal arch, keep in mind that extreme weather conditions may damage delicate flower varieties.
- Can you reach the top of your arch? Pruning your ramblers, scramblers, and climbers is essential for maintaining a neat shape. Ensure you have a tall ladder and access to all sides of the plant for pruning. Similarly, if growing an edible arch, ensure you have enough space for harvesting.
Top arching tip
Train your vines to grow in the desired shape by gently redirecting wayward branches towards the arch structure. You may need to lightly tie down some branches initially to encourage growth in the arch shape. Pruning is also crucial, so keep a sharp pair of shears on hand.
- Kiwi fruit: Plant male plants on one side and female on the other for a successful harvest. The male plant produces flowers, while the female produces both flowers and fruit. Grow plants in full sun, protected from wind.
- Cherries: Opt for the self-pollinating dwarf Lapis variety. Your plant will provide attractive foliage for the first three years before fruiting. Lapins cherries boast a mahogany-red skin with a delicious sweet flavor. Plant them in full sun with 6 to 8 hours of sunshine, preferably on the south side of the property.
- Granadillas: For a rapid grower with stunning edible flowers, choose Grannies. Also known as purple passionfruit, these plants are generally hassle-free and yield a bountiful harvest to share with loved ones. Grow them in full sun with well-composted and deeply loosened soil. Try These Too: Cross-pollinating apples: plant Early Red on one side and Granny Smith on the other. Also, consider annual veggies such as cucumber and squash.
- The ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ Rose: The deep royal blue-purple of this new rose introduces a genuine new colour in roses. This lovely, upright-growing shrub rose bears clusters of semi-double blooms that open to reveal a glowing center of golden yellow stamens. They emit a spicy fragrance and thrive in full sun with nutrient-rich soil.
- Wisteria: Another rapid grower with bold blooms (which can become very heavy). Wisteria flowers are beautifully fragrant, providing a sensory feast. After flowering, a brown, bean-like pod remains on the plant until winter. Plant them in full sun and prune frequently as flowers only grow on new growth.
- Jasminum Polyanthum: Evergreen, sweetly scented, and fast-growing, Jasmin is a perennial favorite. Grow them in full sun or dappled shade, protected from frost. Avoid heavily shaded areas as the plant may not flower and could become leggy. Enjoy their intoxicating scent and the friendly garden visitors they attract.
Try these too: Clematis are exotic treats that create a moody atmosphere with their large purple blooms.