Crossvine creating screening around my front yard; and the ugly Arborvitae hedge that failed at the job.

I reported back in 2020 that I was “replacing my hated Arborvitae hedge with Crossvine,” because A, the hedge was ugly, B, some of it had died, and C, I still wanted to screen parked cars and create a bit of privacy in my front yard. So one of my peak-covid projects was having the hedge removed and replaced with posts and wires that would support vines. Oh, and lots of Mardi Gras beads, just because.

After two full seasons, the Crossvine you see above is doing the job I’d hoped for, and because it’s evergreen, it’s doing it all year long.  Its proper name is Bignonia capreolata and it’s native to the Eastern half of the U.S.

I recently posted photos of Crossvine’s stunning blooms to local Facebook groups and people went nuts over it, so I thought I’d show it off here, too.

 Another vine that’s blooming like crazy now is Lonicera sempervirens, the native honeysuckle in the center of this shot. While not evergreen like the Crossvine, it’s excelling in attracting hummingbirds (!) 

I also planted two Clematis varieties last year, which are doing well and will, I assume, finally bloom next year in their third season. You know, when perennials are supposed to leap, after sleeping and then creeping over two years.

And during the first two years I supplemented the perennial vines with fast-growing annuals like Hyacinth Bean Vine and Morning Glory. No need to do that this year.

In my back yard I’m using more Crossvine for screening (because my co-op severely limits the use of built privacy screens, also known as 6′ tall fencing – the kind that surround the back yards of most townhouses.)

Also seen in this photo are Coreopsis in pots, Amsonia hubrichtii just starting to bloom in the center-left, and Golden Ragwort (Packera aurea) on the right, with waning blooms.

In the background, behind an Oakleaf Hydrangea, are a Purple Smokebush and a ‘Rising Sun’ Redbud.

Here’s my oldest Crossvine, which after 5-6 seasons produces a wild profusion of blooms, seen here through a porch screen. There’s another passel of blooms on the other side of the screen that my neighbors are enjoying.

Bonus Plant – Ninebark!

One more plant that people in my neighborhood are swooning over right now is Ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius), like this ‘Diabolo’ variety I planted in a garden I adopted. Ninebark is native to the Central and Eastern states and is, imho, the best-looking shrub that’s native here in Maryland.

The lavender blooms are Catmint (Nepata), and the chartreuse foliage belongs to some ‘Ogon’ Spireas, which people were swooning over when they were in bloom.