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Evergreen climber for east-facing aspect

Hi there.  I don't know whether anyone can help, or whether I am looking for the impossible!  Anyone like a challenge?

At the bottom of my west-facing garden is a field, but most of the view is obscured by a large and ugly dutch barn immediately behind my wall.  At its highest point the barn is 5-6 metres high.  The previous owner planted conifers to obscure the barn but I want to get rid of these as they take up too much space, light and moisture.  What I would like to do is install trellis above the wall and plant some vigorous evergreen climbers to provide the screening.

So my question is this: can anyone recommend options for a vigourous evergreen climber that will reach 5 metres as quickly as possible, provide good coverage and will tolerate an east-facing aspect with limited direct sunlight (early morning sun being obscured by the house).  I am tempted by clematis armandii but have read conflicting advice on its shade tolerance; also the position can be a little exposed to wind.  I did also wonder about a honeysuckle or, thinking slightly differently, a non-invasive bamboo.  The soil is loam/clay.

Thanks in advance for any help!


  • Hi Philippa

    Thanks for that.  Flowering isn't essential, though it would be nice.  I'm not generally a fan of ivy, but perhaps I should reconsider.  The section of the garden in front of the wall is a veg patch, so limited flower opportunity there!

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,768

    The ivy Hedera algeriensis 'Gloire de Marengo' is a good one, it' has substantial variegated leaves so would provide colour and textural interest. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,034

    I have G de M for a bit round by the shed. It's sitting there just now waiting to be planted. It's next to a large pot and some yellow primulas and brightens up that area immensely. I'm considering just putting it in the ground there to grow over the shed.

    The white climbing Hydrangea - petiolaris - will grow there but it takes a little time to get going. Beautiful once it's established.

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Thanks Philippa and Fairygirl.  I had thought about the hydrangea, but am really looking for an evergreen: I do have a virginia creeper down there already, which is fine in summer and autumn, but reveals the hulking metal monstrosity come leaf-fall!

    I will certainly bear the ivy in mind - I would like to replace the nesting sites lost by felling the trees.  Any thoughts on honeysuckle?

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