How to Plant a Wisteria


The pink, white or lilac colored spring blooms of a wisteria hang in a lackadaisical fashion, giving a touch of southern charm to the landscape. Cold hardy up to zone 4, northerners have come to enjoy the beauty and fragrance of wisteria. Spring, summer or fall are all good times to plant a wisteria.

Step 1

Choose a full sun and well-drained location to plant a wisteria. The planting location could be at the base of a pergola where the vines can be trained to grow across the pergola, creating a scented and shaded area of relaxation.

Step 2

Dig the hole three times as wide as the rootball and two times as deep. Partially refill the hole with about one-third organic matter and dirt. Organic matter can be compost or a commercial compound. Place the rootball in the center of the hole, adding or removing dirt from the bottom so the top of the rootball is level with the ground. Finish backfilling the hole adding in one-third organic matter.

Step 3

Prune the vine (or vines) back according to the nursery tag or to about 18 inches. Tie the vine(s) to the support using twine. The support could be an arbor, pergola, trellis or sturdy fence. As the vine grows, it sends out stems that will twine themselves around the support. The vine will also branch out allowing you to train those side branches to follow the support as you desire. Annual pruning will promote branching and fuller blooms.

Step 4

Water slowly, giving the water time to seep down. Water every 10 to 14 days through summer until the first frost for the first year or two. After that, rainfall alone should suffice.

Step 5

Apply slow-release fertilizer in the spring until the vine covers the desired area and then stop fertilizing. Prune as needed to keep the vines confined to the structure. Pull vines free or cut the clinging stems to change the flow of the vine.

Tips and Warnings

  • The vines of wisteria can become intrusive, even to the point of damaging structures or trees from the weight of the vine. So the location to plant a wisteria should be selected with great care.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Twine
  • Organic matter
  • Mulch


  • Ohio State University Extension: Growing Wisteria
  • Plant Care Guide for Wisteria
Keywords: wisteria, floribunda, vine

About this Author

Barbara Raskauskas is a certified e-learning specialist and certified Microsoft Office specialist. She has written web content, technical documents and course material for a decade. Raskauskas now writes how-to's, product reviews and general topics published on several websites, including Demand Studios.