Climbers can transform a garden, covering bare walls or fences, scrambling over pergolas and arches, and adding height to planting schemes. You can make the most of climbers in even the smallest of gardens, and many will grow happily in a pot.
Find out how to plant a climber.
Many have spectacular, sweetly scented flowers as well as attractive foliage.
Discover 10 scented climbers to grow.
Clematis ‘Maria Sklodowska Curie’
Named in honour of Marie Curie, this large-flowered clematis produces stunning double and semi-double white flowers, with pointed petal tips, from May to July. Grow in a sunny, sheltered and well-drained spot. Prune after flowering and it should flower again in late summer.
Clematis ‘Innocent Blush’
Suitable for growing along trellises and other supports, Clematis ‘Innocent Blush’ has single and semi-double flowers which are light pink, with a deeper pink blush. They appear from May to July. Prune after flowering and it should flower again in late summer.
Clematis ‘Viva Polonia’
This free-flowering clematis bears an abundance of red flowers mottled with white – they become more white towards the centre. ‘Viva Polonia’ means ‘Long Live Poland’ and its colours reflect the Polish flag. It is frost hardy, and prefers a sunny position. Flowers May-July.
Clematis ‘Edda’ has large and vivid purple flowers that are slightly flushed with red, from spring to late summer. It is more compact than many clematis, making it suitable for growing in a container on a patio or balcony – or even in a hanging basket.
Multi-flowering Clematis ‘Sally’ bears deep pink flowers that appear from late spring until late autumn. Normally pink-flowered clematis fade in strong sunlight, but ‘Sally’ becomes a deeper pink. A very good repeat-flowering plant.
Rosa ‘The Lady of the Lake (Ausherbert)’
This beautiful rose bears long and flexible stems, bearing sprays of pretty, semi-double flowers of a delicate blush pink colour. It flowers regularly throughout the summer because, unlike many ramblers, it repeat flowers. It also tolerates shade and has good disease resistance.
Height: 3.5m or more.
Passiflora ‘Constance Elliot’
Passiflora ‘Constance Elliot’ has large, scented, ivory-white flowers from May to November, followed by edible orange fruit. It will grow quite happily in semi-shade and can be grown outdoors or in a cold conservatory. Hardy.
Height: up to 2.75m.
Thunbergia alata ‘Orange and Red’
Also known as black-eyed Susan, Thunbergia alata ‘Orange and Red’ is a vigorous grower, with large flowers and dense foliage. It has orange blooms with flashes of burnt orange/red through the petals, with a black eye. Flowers May-October.
Trachelospermum asiaticum is a vigorous twining climber with small green leathery foliage that turns a rusty red colour during the winter. Flowers April – early August. Not reliably hardy, in northern and exposed regions provide winter protection, or grow it as a conservatory plant.
Height: up to 3m.
Bougainvillea ‘Vera’ is a tender, compact, upright, evergreen shrub with thornless stems with stunning colour. It’s best grown in pots so it can be brought indoors for winter. It can be put outside after frost, usually at the end of May. Flowers May – August.