What should I plant here?
Andrea Bellamy |

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So, there’s this wall at the end of our courtyard. It’s actually another building – BC Fur, a small family-run business that, despite my father-in-law’s “jokes,” doesn’t deal in neighbourhood cats. To my relief, they only wash sheepskins. Or so I’m told. Anyhow, there’s this blank, north-facing wall (shown above around Halloween, obviously) that I’d love to grow a vine against – and I need your advice in choosing one. Here are my requirements:

– shade-tolerant
– preferrably evergreen
– have flowers or berries or interesting colour
– vigorous growth
self-supporting Commenters have noted that this wouldn’t be good for my neighbour’s building. I haven’t asked permission to attach a trellis, but let’s assume I can.

I’m considering Akebia quinata (Chocolate vine) and Parthenocissus tricuspidata (Boston Ivy), however, I don’t know that Akebia will do well in shade – or grow tall enough. Boston ivy, of course, doesn’t meet my evergreen requirement. Sigh… Any suggestions?



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