Vine Time in the Garden

Vines in Movable Containers

Change the look of your garden-and its vertical space-on a whim by planting vines in movable containers. Here are some planting tips.

  • Support your vines by planting a trellis with the vines. Paint it a color to match the house or to complement the colors of the plant. Choose one that is the right size for your container: Once placed in the container, one-third of the trellis needs to be below the container’s lip for better balance.
  • Add pebbles to the top of the soil to add weight to the container and keep it from toppling over, and to keep the soil from spilling out when watering the plant.
  • Attach the vine to the trellis with plastic-coated training wires.
  • Black-eyed Susan, morning-glory, sweet pea, and bougainvillea are all vines that grow well in containers (see more ideas on annual vines for containers below).

Annual Vines

Annual vines grow fast, can be grown from seeds, and need to be planted after the threat of frost is past. Here are just a few you can grow:

  • Cup-and-saucer vine-The flowers resemble a fluted cup in a saucer; they start out as a pale green and then turn lilac or purple.
  • Black-eyed Susan-This vine boasts dynamic yellow or orange tubular flowers with black throats that sit amid arrowhead-shaped leaves; this vine requires full sun.
  • Cardinal climber-The dainty red flowers resemble morning glories. This vine also requires full sun.
  • Hyacinth bean-The leaves of this vine are a striking maroon color with deeper reddish maroon veins. It produces masses of purple or white flowers that become purple bean-like seed pods. Once again, this vine requires full sun.

A Stationary Vine Pole

Annual vines twining up a decorative trellis or post can make a dramatic flowering vertical focal point in your garden. Here’s a vine pole you can make for your garden:


8-foot-long pressure-treated 4×4 post

Two 8-foot sections of 1×2 for arms

#12 eye screws

2-inch-long screws


  1. From the 1x2s, cut seven 18-inch-long pieces for the arms of the trellis. Sand any rough edges.
  2. Drill a hole at each end of the arms to thread support wire through later.
  3. On the 4×4 post, cut 4-inch-wide by 1-inch-deep grooves into the sides to hold the arms. Stagger the grooves at different intervals and on different sides of the post.
  4. Place the arms in the grooves, offsetting them so they are not all the same length on the same side. Using two screws, secure each arm to the post. You may paint the vine pole, if desired.

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