Japanese Wisteria – Delicate Cascading Blooms
Japanese Wisteria, also known as Wisteria
, is a tropical climbing vine that can grow up
to forty feet (12 m) tall and produces flower cascades that are twelve
to eighteen inches (30 – 45 cm) in length.
The stems twine clockwise. It is native to Japan and attracts bees,
butterflies, and birds.
Wisteria flowers are pale lavender or white in color, slightly
fragrant, and bloom as the foliage expands. The pea-like flowers, which
bloom in late May, open gradually from the base of the cluster to the
tip. Foliage color is yellow in the fall.
is best grown with some type of support, such as wires, trellises,
arbors and pergolas. Solid, vertical surfaces can be used if proper
supports are added, such as rows of sturdy, rust-resistant wire
attached four to six inches from the wall.
Wisteria can also be grown as a tree-form by staking the vine in an
upright position. Cut off the top when it reaches the desired height
(typically four to five feet tall). Allow side shoots to develop on the
upper part of the wisteria tree, continually removing shoots from the
In winter, prune the side shoots to a length of six inches to one foot
- until the top reaches the desired size.
Wisteria Vine - Growing Information and Plant Care Tips
USDA Hardiness Zone
USDA Zone 7 - 11
In order to bloom well, Wisteria Vines require full sun, at least six
or more hours of direct sun per day.
Water newly planted Wisteria daily during the warmer months to aid
establishment. Established vines are extremely hardy, and watering
schedule can be reduced to twice a week.
Apply a balanced fertilizer annually in the spring, or a slow-release
fertilizer in spring and autumn.
can be propagated from seeds, stem cuttings, and layering.
Seeds should be soaked in water for twenty-four hours before it in
soil. Be aware that seeds can take ten or more years to bloom.
The best time to take stem cuttings is in late spring to mid-summer.
Stem cuttings will take 2 -3 years to bloom.
Layering is done by covering part of a stem that with soil, leaving the
tip above the soil line. This method can take up to a year to produce a
new plant. The stem can be transplanted when it has developed new roots.
Japanese Wisteria prefer moist, well-draining soil that does not dry
Prune Wisteria to maintain vine shape and quality. If not pruned, vine
can overtake surrounding plants and structures. Pruning is necessary to
train vines and promote flowering.
Cultivars / Varieties
'Wisteria floribunda alba' (White Japanese Wisteria) – Racemes
consisting of beautiful white flowers.
'Wisteria floribunda rosea' (Pink Japanese Wisteria) - Long racemes
comprised of pinkish- lavender, lightly scented flowers.
'Wisteria floribunda carnea' (Pale Pink Japenese Wisteria) – This
cultivar features cascading, pale mauve-pink flowers and abundant
foliage in autumn.
'Wisteria floribunda Domino' (also known as Issai) – Flowers are
lavender to blue-violet in color and faintly scented.
'Wisteria floribunda Royal Purple' (also known as single Black Dragon)
– Features lightly scented, dark purple-violet flowers and abundant
How to Plant Japanese Wisteria
The best time to plant Wisteria is in the fall or spring – before or after summer blooms appear.
- Select a location that receives full sun – a minimum of six hours a day. Wisterias grow best in a moist, well-draining soil.
wisteria vines near vertical supports, such as pergolas, arbors and
fences. You can also attach rows of wire, wood or tubing to a building,
leaving 4 to 6 inches between the wires and the wall. Wire, wood and
tubing are the best materials to use because they will not rust. Wood
should be pressure treated.
- Dig a hole the depth of the root ball, three times as wide. Place the root ball into the hole.
Note: Wisteria vines should be spaced ten feet apart.
the hole halfway with soil. Get rid of air pockets by watering
thoroughly. After the soil absorbs the water, finish filling in the
hole. Water the soil once more.
- The vines
need to be trained to grow on the support system. Choose a strong stem
to be attached to the support. Attach it with a twist tie or gardening
wire. You can also tuck it into the support system. Prune the side
shoots because this will promote more vigorous growth. Train the main
leader as it grows, weaving the vine around the support system.
Japanese Wisteria annually in the spring. Add a layer of compost to the
base of the vine. Cover the base of the plant mulch to control weed
growth and retain the soil's moisture.
wisteria after it flowers in early summer. Cut all of the side shoots
branching from the main stems back to 6 inches. Trim shoots growing
from the vine's base to avoid weakening of the vine.