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Wisteria

Discussion in 'NEW Gardeners !' started by Soiled, May 19, 2018.

  1. Soiled

    Soiled Apprentice Gardener

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    Hi all, have a wisteria which has overgrown by a great deal, I am coming back from long-term illness. I wish to trim it but obviously do not want to damage its growth, any advice on this would be greatly appreciated thank you for your time
     
  2. Doghouse Riley

    Doghouse Riley Head Gardener

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    Wisteria are pretty resilient. They're really like an attractive weed.
    You have to take charge.
    Decide which branches you wish to keep and prune off the others.

    It's a bit like a "leaky hose," the energy will be going into the parts of it nearest the roots. So it will be producing a lot of side shoots near the base. These need pruning off regularly so that the energy is forced to go to the higher parts.

    I'm constantly pruning off unwanted shoots throughout the summer.

    Then it gets its main prune down to between two and four buds. I do this between Christmas and New Year.

    You have to be ruthless, so it ends up looking like this. Branches I don't want get pruned off.

    P1010059.JPG


    P1010070.JPG

    Then you get this. The blooms will appear before any foliage.


    P1010544.JPG
     
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    • Graham B

      Graham B Apprentice Gardener

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      I used to have one at a previous house. It took a couple of years to get established, and then the trouble was keeping it under control!

      Wisteria mostly flowers on the horizontal branches, so you want to encourage that. If you don't already have straining wires, get some in to help that. You don't have to have them dead horizontal - Riley's more informal pattern is really pretty - but you do want them spreading across rather than up.

      And if you want to train new growth along a straining wire, don't be afraid to bend it into the shape you want. It's pretty resilient stuff, and it trains best with end of season growth or last year's which isn't too woody yet. Do remember that it wants to wind clockwise round straining wires too.

      Edit to add... And as Riley says, don't worry too much about chopping anything which isn't going where you want. It's damn near impossible to kill, and the way it puts out new growth, you'll have new branches quick enough.
       
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        Last edited: May 20, 2018
      • Doghouse Riley

        Doghouse Riley Head Gardener

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        One of the features of wisteria is that you always get a second showing of blooms. They are sparser and a bit straggly, but "it does its best."

        They're just coming out on this one, which I trained to grow up an old tree stump..

        P1010713.JPG
         
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