• Deutsch
  • English
  • Français


Wisteria has been at the heart of garden art in Asia for centuries, and is also loved in Europe for its lush, abundant flowering and the vigour and duration of its foliage. It is also ideal for showy, high greening. The foliage growth is tremendous in early years, but will slow down after 10 - 20 years. Inadequate trellis planning or poor maintenance can cause considerable building damage, as wisteria is profoundly vigorous and strong. *This is a poisonous plant.

>>>  Price A  / Price B

Wisteria sinensis // floribunda // frutescens

Wisteria sinensis
Wisteria sinensis

To Thrive...

A location in full sun is best for wisteria; areas without direct sun (e.g. courtyards) or semi-shade are possible, but plants will produce fewer flowers. Distance between plants: 3 - 8 metres.

  • Chinese wisteria, Wisteria sinensis, grafted - Price A

  • Mini-Wisteria "Amethyst Falls" o. "Longwood Purple," grafted - Price B 

Characteristics and Pruning

Wisteria is an extremely strong and vigorous twiner which can reach a height of 20 metres - a bit of a 'green octopus' - the young arms reaching a radius of more than 1 metre. It's light-fleeing shoots grow into crevices and nooks- sometimes with a cracking / blasting-effect on the structures they enter. Leaves are pinnate, usually light green, sometimes with an orange-brown halo. Foliage from May to November, rarely with yellow autumn colouring.


There are blue, white, and pink varieties in two main species: Wisteria sinensis (Chinese Wisteria) and Wisteria floribunda (Japanese Wisteria). There are several hybrids which are not easy to classify according to the direction of their twining, so an exact species identification of commercially available wisteria is sometimes not possible. W. sinensis flowers at the beginning of May, with a timid flowering at the end of the summer. W. floribunda flowers a little later. Another species, Wisteria frutescens (American Wisteria), develops flowers at an earlier age, but is vulnerable to frost. This mini-wisteria frutescens ("Long Purple" or "Amethyst Falls") is an alternative for warmer climates, is slower growing, matures earlier, is suitable for potting, and is less liekly to cause structural damage. With all purple wisteria: as the flowers start to open, they are delicious deep blue / violet / purple; fully open blooms fade to a greyish-blue. They often flower at the same time as lilacs. Has long, grey-green, hairy fruit-pods. Ungrafted plants often develop flowers only after several years, and tend to develop few(er) flowers.

*Summer and winter pruning should be carried out as shown in the photos. Regular pruning is absolutely essential to prevent damage to support systems.

Climbing Supports for the Facade

Wisteria needs sturdy, preferably rod-like support systems, designed for the anticipated height and width of the plant. A simple linear system, rather than one that coves a large surface area; no wooden trellises. Wire ropes are suitable if the main trunk is trained strictly parallel to the wires, without twining, as illustrated in the photos. The short side branches are to be arranged so that any scratching of the wall is prevented should windy conditions make them move or twist the spindles. Lightning conductors, downpipes, and eave gutters, etc.. are not to be reached by the plant; all growth supports should have a distance of 2 metres from any such building elements and to the eave gutters-- to the sides as well as from the top. For suitable cable systems, see below. Use heavy or massive systems only; with potted plants or for wisteria frutescens, easy or medium systems will be adequate.


Appropriate wire rope systems?

Please click the icon to see the full suitability chart

High wisteria on old espaliers, city hall Riesa / Saxony
Wisteria after summer pruning
Exeptional explosion of wisteria flowers
Exeptional explosion of wisteria flowers
High wisteria with white blossoms
High wisteria with white blossoms
Two wisteria on wire ropes
Greening with wisteria

Greening Facades with Wisteria

View this gallery for many more examples of wisteria-greened facades. These climbiners also look amazing even after spring flowering, thanks to their unparalleled vitality.

An old wisteria in spring, Botanical Garden, Halle / Saxony-Anhalt
Flowering wisteria span an alleyway on the Greek island of Crete
A very lush building greening with wisteria!
Wisteria in full bloom
Wisteria as a balcony plant? No problem, as this picture prooves.
Depending on the variety, the colour of the flowers can turn out slightly more grey than blue, especially as they begin to fade.
Wisteria should never be planted on drainpipes!! But here, with the rather tame species Wisteria frutescens, an exception is allowed.
When the spring blossoming is over, such a lush facade greening is often not recognised as wisteria.
Emphasising a vertical part of a building by greening it with wisteria
Large wisteria greening on a prefab. building
Massive greening with wisteria
Rigorously pruned wisteria after spring blossoming
A colourful facade thanks to wisteria, even if the flowering is over and only vibrant, green foliage remains.
Only possible with special care ~ summer wisteria on the edge of the roof and in the snow guard
Wisteria in summer with red climbing roses
High building greening with 2 wisteria on tension cables
Dense building greenery ~ wisteria, Eutin / Schleswig-Holstein
Wisteria on the baroque town hall of Lichtenfels / Bavaria; a few remaining blossoms can still be seen.
Wisteria on a facade of a Gründerzeit-house
Balcony greening with very old wisteria
These two wisteria are cultivated with rigorous pruning. The summer blossoms are visible.
Wisteria on a traditional German half-timbered house
Wisteria in winter, town hall Riesa / Saxony
Wisteria on the market square of Meersburg / Baden-Württemberg

Greening Objects with Wisteria

With wisteria, balconies, pergolas, posts and masts can be greened. Have a look...

A peek into the origin of wisteria culture: very old wisteria on a pergola in the Sankeien Garden in Yokohama / Japan. Photo: Regine Hartkopf
Flowering wisteria on an historic arcade in Leipzig / Saxony 2005
A banister greened with wisteria
Wisteria on a steel pergola
This Wisteria sinensis grows on a massive frame made of tubular steel, set approx. 0.5 m in front of the house facade.
Chinese wisteria on (and in!) a railing
A balcony greened with wisteria
White wisteria over a fence

Botanical Features

Here you can see wisteria's leaves, fruits, blossoms, how it looks in autumn, winter, and spring, and some examples of summer and winter pruning.

Flower buds (Wisteria sinensis)
Blossoms of chinese wisteria sinensis
A pink wisteria variety
White blossoms, wisteria "Alba"
The medium-growing species Wisteria frutescens offers intensively coloured flowers and a long flowering period.
Second-flowering of wisteria in midsummer with full foliage
Wisteria maintenance pruning: The side branches of the wisteria should be pruned regularly during the summer to a height of about 30 - 40 cm to encourage flower-producing woody stems. In winter, (see photo above), they are trimmed down again to about 3 buds.
Wisteria, trained and maintained rigorously, led with cables on the wall of a house, in winter. A fairly spartan framework is necessary to prevent the plant from damaging the building.
The same wisteria the following midsummer, an exemplary summer pruning
Two very old wisteria with thick trunks
The healthy foliage lasts well into autumn and tends not to change colour, even when other trees and shrubs have long been in full autumn splendour.
In very sunny locations and in years with a lot of sun in late autumn, however, it produces beautiful autumn colouring.
Yellow foliage in November

Trellising: Avoiding Structural Damage

Wisteria is a very strong twiner and can potentially damage any trellis / climbing aid. A 'parallel trunk guidance' will keep this from happening.

Trunk of an old wisteria
After only 10 - 15 years wisteria can be expected to have trunks (stems) like these!
Branches grown into a railing/banister. In contrast to wire ropes, less structural damage occurs on rod-like climbing aids; nevertheless, permanent twining is to be avoided.
A wisteria-damaged drainpipe (after unwrapping the wisteria)
By training wisteria parallel to the wire rope (as described below), deformations like these here (overstretched rope and bending wall bracket) can be prevented.
Overstretched, ingrown wire rope
Wire rope for breakfast! This wisteria is still 'chewing away' on its ripped out support system...
Cable system, heavy kit. The twining shoots of solitary plants already reach heights of 4-6 m in the first year and should then be reduced to one main shoot per wire rope and be unwound from the rope (see below).
Unwound wisteria shoot guided parallel to the wire rope (in winter). This shoot is now trained as a main stem with short side shoots; the bindings have to be checked regularly in the following years, and if required, replaced.
Stems are slightly bent and guided around wall brackets in an arching form to prevent the plant from growing into the brackets in the future; continue with next picture.
A year later, after leaf fall, the entangled shoots need to be disentangled again and pruned. The bindings on the future main stem are replaced. Continue with next picture.
After completion of the maintenance work: here the binding was done with flexible and adjustable sturdy rubber bandages. Some emerging flower buds can be seen on the side shoots.
Climbing vertical lines is rather easy for wisteria; if horizontal lines are also intended, shoots must be guided and tied separately.
As an alternative to expensive climbing support systems, pre-trained solitary specimens can be planted and trained onto columns or similar, and fastened with flexible velcro tape or elastic bands.
Stable stainless steel climbing support with generous distance from wall.

Wire Rope Systems Compatible with Wisteria

Please click on the diagrams for details!

  suitable               = of limited suitability               = unsuitable