Scented evergreen climbers

To the front of my house in Dawlish, Devon, I have an area of trellis which I have decided to cover with scented evergreen climbers. It’s quite a long trellis and needs to provide privacy all year round.  Previously, this part of my garden was dominated by a large 30-foot long leylandii hedge, that was 10 foot high and 4 foot thick. I am glad to see the back of it and now have an opportunity to grow plants that are far more colourful, scented and interesting to a wider range of wildlife.

Over the past 3 months, I have compiled a list of the most suitable climbers that will not only provide an evergreen and sweet-scented screen (a ‘sweetener’ for the neighbours), but also plenty of interest in all seasons.

Tip: Climbers are an ideal solution for that area in the garden that is limited on horizontal space. Unlike the traditional hedgerow, they are climbing plants are generally easy to maintain and will naturally cover a trellis or pagoda and stick to its shape without growing too high.

Scented evergreen climbers to try

Here are the scented evergreen climbers that are currently in my shortlist:

Clematis ‘Fragrant Oberon’

  • Size: 1.5 metres
  • Flowering: March, April, May
  • Position: Sun or semi shade
  • Hardiness: -7ºC
  • Description: Powerfully and sweetly perfumed, the pretty satin flowers of Clematis ‘Fragrant Oberon’ are lemon-white with a hint of green, and look stunning set against the dark foliage of this evergreen clematis. Due to its popularity, this plant is currently in high demand.

Trachelospermum jasminoides (Star Jasmine)

  • Size: Height 9m – Spread 3m
  • Flowering: June, July, August
  • Position:  Sun or semi shade
  • Hardiness: Protect in winter in cold areas
  • Description:  An elegant climber, bearing thousands of pure white, star-shaped flowers on twining woody stems throughout summer. The glossy, evergreen foliage of star jasmine forms the perfect backdrop for its dramatic blooms which perfume the air with a sweet and irresistible fragrance.

Lonicera Japonica ‘Darts World’ (Honeysuckle)

  • Size: up to 5 metres
  • Flowering: Spring to late summer
  • Position: Best in light shade
  • Hardiness: Fully hardy climber
  • Description: The Honeysuckle creates a stunning effect creeping and climbing wherever you plant it. Plant and train them up against a structure or similar to give an abundance of colour. This variety offers large, stunning rose pink and white fragrant flowers.

Akebia quinata chocolate vine

  • Size: Spread 2m – height 10m
  • Flowering: March to May
  • Position: Sun or partial shade
  • Hardiness: Fully hardy climber
  • Description: Unusual chocolate-maroon spicy vanilla scented flowers beneath palmate evergreen leaves.

I like to mix and match my collection of scented evergreen climbers, allowing each plant to intermingle with other varieties. However, it is worth pointing out, that some species grow more vigorously than others, so ensure you do your research and give the fast-ramblers more space than the more modest plants.

James Middleton

An obsessive gardener since 1982. Day-time job - web designer and developer and University lecturer.

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Fred Uhlig

    Can you help me? I have planted this Spring a Lonicera Darts World.
    It has grown against an arch and is already 6ft tall, however,
    Not one flower. What can I do?
    Thank you,

  2. James Middleton

    Don’t worry, Lonicera can be a tempramental climber. It will grow/flower when it chooses. You might find next year it will be covered in flowers! To get the most out of your honey suckle next year, feed it from March till September with Tomorite normal strength.

  3. Jennifer Brightman

    Need a fragrant evergreen climber to grow against a wall. Also a smaller one to cover an obelisk. Help please! Many thanks

  4. James Middleton

    Hi Jennifer,

    My apologies for the delay in replying. You could go Honeysuckle, or Star Jasmine.

    Best regards, James

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