If you have a slightly unattractive feature such as a shed or a high wall you share with your neighbours, a flowering vine can help turn a serious building structure into an attractive, outdoor feature. Here are some great options for Aussie backyards.
Passionfruit vines are a popular choice for backyards all around Australia. Passionfruit are enthusiastic growers in the Australian climate, loving hot weather and full sun with well-drained soil. Passionfruit vines traditionally had offal, such as sheep's livers, planted at their base, to provide iron, but these days you can provide iron with specialised fruit and flower fertiliser available from any nursery. Not only are passionfruit vine enthusiastic growers, but they also flower with small attractive and fragrant flowers and tasty fruits for owners to eat.
Grape vines are also easy to grow in warm and sunny environments. By choosing the right strain of grapes, you can grow a great grape for eating or for using for drying or fermentation. Grapes enjoy warm environments, but they do need some protection from frost or harsh full sunlight. Grapes require heavy annual pruning to promote maximum growth.
In the fruiting season it can be worth netting over your vine to prevent attracting vermin such as rats to your vine. Grapes can be delicious to eat, especially when left to ripen on the vine to develop natural sugars. Grapes grow well on a netting or light structure to guide the growth pattern of the vine, to prevent burning of the fruit in the harsh temperatures of the Australian summer.
Kiwifruit, or Actinidia, grows well in temperature climates. Also known as Chinese gooseberry, the woody vine quickly grows and loves a support structure, such as a trellis, to support the wandering, heavy and woody vine. Fruit appears on vine that is more than one year old; although, fruit production does drop off over time depending on overall soil conditions. If you start to notice a drop off in fruit production, it is worth removing and replanting a kiwifruit vine the following spring.
Kiwifruit can be tricky to pollinate naturally, so they grow best in areas where there is a mix of male and female plants.
Fruiting vines provide an attractive feature to your garden, as well as tasty locally grown snacks. Contact local nurseries, such as The Gardeners Nursery, to discover which flowering vines best suit your area and what care and maintenance these vines require.