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Modify existing hedge with vines?

 
John Gratrick
Posts: 55
Location: Mallorytown Zone 5a
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Hi all

I was by my moms place the other day and saw the state of the backyard, especially the row of trees between us and the neighbours. I was thinking that I could rip out all the dead stuff which would be almost all of it and replant but that's a lot of work, and money so I got to thinking that maybe I could plant some climbing vines around the area and use the dead trees there as natural trellises. At would provide decent cover in the summer and then provide mulch and maybe fruit throughout the fall. What do you think. The pics were taken today (April 10). I am in zone 5 and wonder if anyone has any favourite vines they would recommend.
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Hedge row
 
Leila Rich
steward
Posts: 3999
Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
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Vines often terrify me!
NZ's ecosystem is pretty damaged, and vines are playing their part
But we're talking very different climates and geographies.
 
Renate Howard
pollinator
Posts: 755
Location: zone 6b
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For fruit, grapes are the first thing to come to mind, tho sweet peas would be so nice there - wonderful fragrance and beautiful too. Actually you could probably grow peas or pole beans there for a fast crop, bare root grapes would take a year to really fill in the space. You could also grow mini pumpkins or gourds there, if you can find one with a short enough season for where you are.

Or grow a mix of any of those vines with sweet peas to make it look more pretty and less messy. I've found through my enjoyment of neglected gardens that if you have a few lovely flowers mixed in, a big mess starts to look like just a backdrop for the blooms. There's a bean called lab-lab that makes beautiful purple flowers and has purple pods. Some people eat them and some say they're toxic. The fellow I knew who grew them ate them.

Whatever you do, don't plant any member of the morning glory family - they are WEEDS, and throw seeds and come up everywhere for years after, growing where you don't notice them until they're big enough to choke out your plants!
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