I absolutely love anything that climbs and vines.
If I had it my way, I'd grow ivy up our stone walls, but Jason is very adamant about his ivy plant distaste. He loves most other vines, and has even requested that I grow tons of rambling and climbing roses all around the house, but I can never get him to cave on the ivy.
I tried growing ivy up the chicken coop, but those chickens ate every single one of the ivy plants I bought and planted down to little dried up root nuggets.
So I enjoy the ivy that grows all over the old farms around here, and up the walls of one of my favorite local antique stores.
Isn't that landscaping magical?
Can you believe that same building used to look like this?:
And then this?:
I get completely submersed in history when I go. The floors are still original from 1900, and they're so old, full of gaps, uneven, shellacked with 6 inches of high gloss shellac and glorious.
It's truly an experience from the time you park and walk through the magical landscaping leading to the door, until the time you leave.
But back to vines.
I decided to grow some vines in barrels so that I didn't have to commit to a location, and so that we can take them with us should we decide to pack up the covered wagon and head out.
It's what makes this project an awesome investment if you're a plant lover who might be renting for now. Or just staying in your current home short term. Just take this bad boy with you when you leave.
The plant I chose is called an Alabama Crimson Trumpet Honeysuckle, and it's really been loving its new home. Every day, or when I think about it, I just come outside and tuck in any new vines that have grown and gone rogue, very similar to how you train, stake and babysit a tomato plant while it's growing. I can tell it's a vigorous grower, because it's already reaching for the sun up out of the trellis.
This type of honeysuckle vine doesn't have any suckers, and it doesn't tendril around things, so you really have to weave and train in. Growing it against a flat trellis would take a bit more work, but it would be just as beautiful.
The tag on the plants actually said it can even be used as a ground cover if you don't stake or train it at all. It is deciduous though, so as a groundcover in zone 6 or below, it would just be a mass of twigs when it dropped its leaves.
It's super simple to make, and can be assembled with nails, screws or both.
I made it to fit inside these half whiskey barrels, so it's about 20-ish" wide at the widest point at the bottom. You could easily change the dimensions of everything if you wanted a different size.
All it takes is 5 2x2x8s.
The cut sizes needed are this:
(4) 14 1/2"
(4) 9 1/2"
(2) 4 1/2"
Spread two 48" pieces into an A-shape. The measure up 6 1/2" from the bottom and attach the 14 1/2" piece.
Measure 10 1/2" up from the bottom of that piece, and attach the 12" piece. The space between each rung is 10 1/2" from the bottom of one ladder rung to the bottom of the next, all the way up until you get to the very top piece, which is only 9" up.
So the order from top to bottom is this:
Then you put those two finished ladders on their sides, and begin attaching your long sides.
Just line up the sides with your finger and make everything flush.
These longer pieces are cut long enough to cover the ends of the 2x2s.
The measurement of your rungs on this side from top to bottom is:
Repeat for both sides.
Either leave it natural, or stain it. I stained mine with Minwax Dark Walnut to match the whiskey barrels.
I think these would be great for any kind of tall, vining plant inside of them. Roses, clematis, trumpet vine, honeysuckle or climbing hydrangea would all be on my list!