Do It Like the Pros
Landscape architect David Samuelson of McDugald Steele in Houston shares these steps for training a vine on a frame made of cables. When choosing a pattern, allow for a mature, maintained vine width of at least 6 inches.
- Step 1: Decide on a pattern, and determine how many eye screws you will need. Measure the distance between proposed connection points
to see how much coated cable or wire to buy. David used a vinyl-coated cable.
- Step 2: Center the pattern on the wall. Mark connection points with a grease pencil, and drill points with the appropriate bit. Insert
3/4- to 1-inch eye screws directly into brick, stone, or wood. Apply clear silicone caulk made for outdoor use around the
eye screws to keep moisture out.
- Step 3: Starting at the bottom, thread and secure cable through the first eye screw, and then thread it through the second eye screw.
Pull tight, and loop it through again. Move to next eye screw, and repeat, finishing the pattern and tying off the cable.
- Step 4: Plant one vine below the center of the pattern for candelabra and fan designs. For diamond patterns, plant a vine at the
base of each bottom point. Twine the vines around the cable, and secure with twist ties.
Maintaining the Look
Continue training the vines to grow around the coated cable until the pattern is complete--usually in one to two growing seasons. Once the vines have covered the cable, clip as needed to maintain the form.
This article is from the August 2005 issue of Southern Living.