It rained recently as I wandered through the neighborhoods of Eugene and Springfield and a pleasant aroma filled the air. One of the gardens I discovered had a beautiful cedar arbor sitting as an entryway displaying gorgeous blooms. In Spring the Star Jasmine is in full bloom with a lovely scent. This plant is a popular choice for good reason- its evergreen foliage and its versatility. A plant that is easy to train and prune.

Trumpet vine (Campsis radicans) and Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) are both fast growing, deer resistant, as well as drought tolerant. Additionally, they are a favorite among hummingbirds! Hummingbirds are attracted to the tubular slender flowers on plants where their beaks are perfectly shaped to extract nectar from. Star Jasmine blooms in the Spring and Trumpet vines bloom summer through fall. Just keep in mind when planting a Trumpet vine that it may take several years to bloom, depending on the age when you purchase it. This plant prefers to establish its roots and mature before blooming. It might be a good idea to add some mycorrhizal fungi, which we sell in tablet or soluble form at all of our retail locations (or use Nature’s Best which includes mycorrhizal fungi). These beneficial fungi help the plant uptake nutrients, root growth and increases disease resistance.

Clematis Armandii is also a possibility with a very robust evergreen that blooms early as well. This plant has large, evergreen leaves compared to many other Clematis varieties which tend to be deciduous and often smaller leaves. It’s a good idea to keep it pruned each year to keep it healthy and be sure to have a strong trellis for this vine. It seems every year mine has dead leaves tucked in where they are not visible, so be sure to look behind the vine and pull those out to detract insects and slugs.

If you are in the market for a sweet-scented and easy to maintain vine Japanese Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) is a good selection. Gorgeous clusters of bright red or orange tubular flowers that bloom from late spring to mid-summer attract hummingbirds and butterflies. If planted in the right location and given the right conditions this vine will look beautiful for years. It is a great vine to fill an entrance way.

All of these vines are vigorous growers so be sure to choose placement wisely!

Written by Karen Smith, Lane Forest Products Plant Specialist