Fast-growing perennial vines are a great way to cover up a wall, hide an eyesore, frame a doorway or just add color and beauty to your garden. But vines don't always need to be grown vertically. They can help slow erosion on a steep bank or cover up a problem garden area. When choosing your vine, consider the amount of sunlight your garden receives, what you will use to support your vine and how your vine attaches to its support.
Trumpet creeper (Campsis radicans) is a fast-growing native vine. Its funnel-shaped orange, yellow or red flowers appear in clusters in early summer. The vine flowers on new growth, and the blooms are followed by bean-shaped capsules. Trumpet creeper, a favorite with hummingbirds, has aerial roots that cling and climb around each other as well as its support structure. It needs full sun, is very drought-tolerant and will grow in almost any soil. It grows in USDA hardiness zones 3 to 9.
Clematis (Clematis spp.) is a member of the buttercup family. There are more than 250 species, with a range of flower colors including white, pink, purple, blue, red, coral, yellow and green. Clematis needs well-drained soil and full sun, but its roots must be covered with mulch so they remain cool. The plants climb by twining their very thin petioles. When choosing a support for your clematis, look for thin wires or a grid pattern; thick poles or fencing won't work. One of the fastest-growing varieties is "Montana," which can grow to 40 feet. Clematis is hardy to USDA zone 3.
Five-leaved akebia (Akebia quinata) is spicy-scented, twining vine that produces purple-brown, white or pink flowers. The vine is native to Japan, Korea and China and grows in the United States to USDA zone 4. Akebia prefers moist, fertile, well-drained soil, but it is not very particular. It will grow in full sun to partial shade. Use a support such as a wire fence to train your vine.
Silver Lace Vine
Silver lace vine (Polygonum aubertii) is a fast-growing, twining vine native to western China and Russia. It can grow to 35 feet and produces drooping, greenish-white flowers throughout the summer. Silver lace vine is easily transplanted and spreads through rhizomes. It is susceptible to infestation from Japanese beetles. Silver lace vine is hardy to USDA zone 4.
Queen's wreath (Antigonon leptopus), also called coral vine, is a twining vine with curled tendrils and bright pink or white lacy clusters of flowers. It blooms through the end of summer and attracts pollinators like bumblebees. Queen's wreath needs full sun and regular watering, although it will grow in most any soil. The vine, which can grow to 40 feet, thrives on walls that receive afternoon sun. It is hardy to USDA zone 9.