Climbing Plants for Arbours

Unclothed, an arbour adds beautiful structure and presence to any garden. Acting as a focal point, it’s somewhere for your eye to stop - a full stop in a garden design. 

Drape plants over your arbour and it becomes an oasis of perfume on sultry summer evenings and an enchanting hideaway to enjoy a few precious relaxing moments in a day. A place to plot, perhaps, or even engage in illicit trysts? 

So, get that arbour clothed right now!

5x3 Shire Rose Arbour

6x2 Store More Atlas Arch Arbour

4x3 Rowlinson Keswick Garden Arbour

The Top 5 Plants for Arbours 

Some plants love climbing in, around and over arbours. A few of the best include:


Chinese honeysuckle on trellis

Honeysuckle is a must for any sunny arbour. Entwining and tangly stems are laden with perfume packed blooms in summer. 

Sweet peas

purple sweet pea flowers

Sweet peas are easy to grow from seed and can create a cloud of fragrance around most arbours. Sow seeds in autumn and spring for a continuous show of olfactory delights in summer. They look good as well!


Wisteria growing against a brick wall

Wisteria is a delight and, when bought as a grafted plant, will flower in the first year after planting (plants grown from seed can take a few more years before they are mature enough to bloom). Long racemes of lavender blue or white flowers produce the unmistakable fragrance of a British summer. Ask the nursery if the plant is grafted - or have a good look and see the graft point about six inches from the surface of the compost. 


Pink clematis growing up trellis

Clematis are delightful when scrambling up arbours and, with a little planning, you can create interest all the year round. Spring and summer varieties are plentiful but add in an evergreen variety such as Clematis Armandii and you will have a 12 month of the year show. Armandii is also sweetly perfumed and - being evergreen - keeps its leaves all the year round.


Red roses growing on a garden arbour

That's all that needs to be said - roses. Except that once established and in flower it is doubtful you will ever move from your arbour. Why would you as nowhere in your garden will be as beautiful?

Tips for Planting Around an Arbour 

Whatever you choose to plant make sure you: 

  • Put the arbour up first and ensure it is strong, sound and secure. A fully-grown wisteria can weigh a lot, as can a rampant rose. Plus, you don't want to damage roots when securing the arbour or preparing a base.
  • Think about lighting before finishing the project. Mains electricity requires a trench (best done first) or consider solar lighting. Solar is fantastic and streets ahead of the first little efforts all those years ago. The right lighting will create that special ambiance.
  • Make yourself comfortable! You will be using the arbour a lot so invest in the best cushions and plenty of them. It is not unheard of for people to snooze in their arbours (unheard = only if you ignore the snoring noises).

4x3 Rowlinson Jaipur Garden Arbour

Forest Sunflower Arbour Seat – Sorrento

Forest 5x3 Conwy Arbour – Whitby

Plan, plant and enjoy - an arbour will bring decades of beauty and relaxation to any garden. 

Don’t forget, Buy Sheds Direct specialise in all types of garden structures. Please click here to view our superb full range of garden arbours.

Main image: 7x4 Rowlinson Dartmouth Swing Seat