Just a general query from someone who's wife has decided she wants a lot of climbing roses in the garden. Is it best to use string or soft ties (which i noticed at a wyevale garden centre) to secure them to a trellis?
IN MY EXPERIENCE, SOFT TIES ARE A BIT OF A MISNOMER AS THEY CONCEAL HARD WIRE.
I HAVE TIED THINGS TO OTHER THINGS WITH "SOFT" TIES IN THE PAST, FORGOTTEN ABOUT THEM FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS AND COME BACK TO FIND THE POOR PLANT'S STEMS LITERALLY CUT IN TWO BY THE WIRE.
I NOW USE GREEN TWINE, NOT THE PLASTIC GREEN TWINE, THE HEMP ONE.
IT DISINTEGRATES AFTER A COUPLE OF SEASONS, ALLOWING THE PLANT TO GROW AND ALSO GIVES YOU THE CHANCE TO RETIE IT IF IT HASN'T ALREADY ATTACHED ITSELF BY MEANS OF THORNS, BRANCHES, LEAVES OR TENDRILS.
Ordinary garden string/twine will rot and snap over time, I use it for annuals mostly. Long term, covered garden wire or even a cut up old pair of tights is best for permanent plant support.
I guess the soft ties are a type of coated wire ??? Never used them.
I do it loose Pansy.... leaving some growing room .
My method is to twist it tight to the trellis, then do a loose loop around the stem. Check and adjust it now and then.
I use the velcro tie which is on a roll from poundland (there's two rolls in a pack) for all my climbing plants, I just make sure I have it with the green/soft side facing the plant and the rough velcro edge facing outwards.
Soft jute twine only.
Most of my tying in is done with the green bio-degradeable jute garden twine. (I tend to find small balls of it I have taken out of pockets around the house and I now have an annual Christmas order for the stuff from my daughter.)
I don't like the idea of the wire cutting into the plant. The advantage of the jute is that the colour fades quite quickly. I find the jute more or less softens itself to suit what you are tying up.
My dad used to use that polyproplene twine which I would not touch with a barge pole.
But soft rubbery wire does not bio degrade. I get at least good two seasons with jute twine.
I am still tying in my C montanas regularly to cover and disguise a long run of ugly tree stumps behind my garden. Once it is out of my reach my garden twine bill will be a lot less. The Rambling Rector gets it as well but he is a rather bigger challenge.
Thank you everyone for your replies, it looks like i will stick with the garden jute/twine/string for the time being then
Mostly I use string but on permanent planting say the stem of a standard rose other other woody stems I use "soft tie" tie in a figure of 8 this gives the plant stem space to expand if I neglect to check often enough.
To be perfectly honest, I use whichever comes to hand first - plastic coated wire or garden twine. With either, as long as you leave it loose around the plant and tight around the support it's unlikely to do much damage.