Draping or climbing vines bring color and a sense of calm to any space. Many vines are easy to take care of and can be trained to grow in the way you’d like it to. Let’s take a closer look at each of these vines to see which one is the best fit for your space!
Which Plant Is A “Vine Plant?”
A vine plant refers to any type of plant that climbs or trails.
Climbing and vining plants use specialized tendrils, aerial roots, suckers, thorns and other methods to support themselves on another structure, like a trellis or moss pole.
Trailing plants hang down over the edge of their pot. Some fall completely vertically, like string of pearls, where others creep and sprawl horizontally and vertically, like Pothos or English ivy. The latter can be trained to climb with the use of wire or twine around a support system. But a trailing plant like string of pearls cannot also climb.
"Most vining plants (ex. Pothos, Philodendron, etc.) grow on trees in their natural habitat. Therefore, when they don’t have a tree to grow up, they vine downwards in search of more space to take over," explains Vanessa Jovel Byrnes, Co-Owner and Founder of Living with Green.
Common examples of outdoor vines you’re likely familiar with include ivy, black-eyed Susan vine, morning glories, passionflower, wisteria, clematis, climbing hydrangea, Gardenia jasminoides 'Radicans' (creeping Gardenia or cape Jasmine), and honeysuckle. Many of these full sun-loving vines produce gorgeous, highly fragrant flowers that support our pollinator friends and are a vital food source for hummingbirds.
While many vines are displayed outdoors along walls and fences, there are a multitude of vines that can successfully be grown indoors as well. "They are great options for most rooms since they can be trained and staged to cover a wall, ceiling, or even just left to hang from a window or bookshelf," adds Jovel Byrnes.
Types Of Indoor Vine Plants
Heartleaf Philodendron (Philodendron hederaceum)
The heartleaf philodendron is a common houseplant because it is low-maintenance and fast growing. This evergreen perennial vine produces long stems that are covered in green, glossy heart-shaped leaves. The leaves appear brown in color when they first emerge, and then quickly turn green.
A heartleaf philodendron can be placed on a tabletop, in a hanging basket, or can be trained to grow on a trellis or pole. It is a great option as an indoor plant because it is so versatile when it comes to styling.
String of Pearls (Senecio rowleyanus)
The string of pearls is one of the most popular succulents kept as an indoor plant. This trailing plant has pea-shaped leaves that make it easy to identify. These pods store water, so this plant can tolerate inconsistent watering and is perfect for beginners.
The string of pearls produces delicate creamy-white flowers in the spring. Keep this type of plant in a tall pot or in a hanging basket to show off its drooping vines. It also has air purifying properties, making it not only visually appealing, but also beneficial for your living environment.
Hoya carnosa plants are commonly grown as indoor plants. They live for many years and produce classic dark green leaves on vining foliage. This vine plant also produces fragrant, light pink and red star-shaped flowers. The hoya carnosa is commonly called “wax plant” because of its thick and waxy foliage.
This type of plant store water in its foliage, which makes it more tolerant of under watering than some other houseplants. Hoya carnosa requires a patient plant parent as they as slow growers.
English Ivy (Hedera helix)
The English ivy plant has long, trailing stems that are a stylish addition to any space. Each variety of inside ivy plants come in different cultivars, meaning each type of English ivy produces different colored foliage. They come in all shades of green or variegated with white, yellow, gray, black, and cream. Each variety also varies in leaf shape and growth habit.
The English ivy plant can be grown in many different ways. It can be hung in hanging baskets, grown at the base of other houseplants, or can be placed in pots of their own. Place your ivy on a shelf to let it trail down and drape over books or other items, or train it to climb a trellis to create a living wall.
Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
The common name for Pothos plants is devil’s ivy since they are easy to take care of and so difficult to kill. Pothos are evergreen plants with thick, waxy, green, heart-shaped leaves that come in shades of yellow, white, dark green, or pale green. Some variegated varieties, like satin Pothos, have dramatic silver and gray patterns. Golden Pothos and neon Pothos boast vibrant lime greens and yellows that brighten any space.
"Pothos are great vining plants to grow indoors. They come in a variety of colors (Jade, Golden, Marble, etc.) and are quite vocal when they are thirsty so are considered an easy care plant overall," explains Jovel Byrnes.
They come in a variety of colors (Jade, Golden, Marble, etc.) and are quite vocal when they are thirsty so are considered an easy care plant overall
Pothos plants are easy to care for, and are also air-purifying. They are commonly used as indoor hanging plants, but can be grown vertically since they are climbers. Train them to grow upwards by using a decorative trellis or moss pole. You can let them spill over the edges of hanging baskets, alone or in a mixed planting. They can be kept trimmed, or you can let the runners grow long and train them to grow along a stair rail or mantel.
Bougainvilleas are flowering vines that can be grown indoors. They are known for their green foliage and vibrant pink, purple, and orange hues. Most people assume these clusters are the plant's flowers, but they're actually petal-like bracts that hide bougainvillea's true blooms, which are usually small white or yellow buds.
Bougainvillea vines can be trained around a hoop or over a trellis inserted in its pot, or can be displayed as a hanging plant. However, this fast climbing vine doesn't need much training to twine around any type of support.
Creeping Fig (Ficus pumila)
The Ficus pumila, commonly known as the creeping fig, is primarily grown outdoors, but can successfully be grown as an indoor ornamental houseplant. There are many varieties of this fast growing vine with varying leaf sizes. Indoor creeping figs feature slim stems with green leaves that appear heart shaped.
Indoor creeping figs are best grown in hanging baskets or given something to attach to and climb. This type of plant would also display well on a high shelf where it can show off its trailing stems. Another option is to plant it as a ground cover beneath a tall houseplant and allow the stems to spill over the sides of the container.
Arrowhead Plant (Syngonium podophyllum)
Syngonium podophyllum, or arrowhead plant, is an evergreen climbing plant. They come in a wide range of colors and pattering, so chose one that best fits your decor. The leaf structure of an arrowhead plant changes as it matures, growing from an arrow shape to a divided leaf. The leaves change color as they age as well, ranging from dark green, white, light green, and pink.
You can train the vines of an arrowhead plant to grow up a moss pole, trellis, or other support. You can also let it naturally cascade down a hanging basket.
Wandering Jew (Tradescantia zebrina)
You can train an inchplant to grow vertically, but they prefer to cascade over the edge of a pot naturally. Many varieties of wandering Jew plants exist, all with some sort of purple, pink, green, white, or silver variegations.
Despite how easy vines snap off, this plant is virtually indestructible. Simply stick the cut or broken end of a piece of vine back into the pot and it will root within a few days. This is the easiest way to create a fuller, bushier plant.
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