climbing plants include apple trees and a lacebark pine espaliered in geometric and fanlike shapes against walls
Photo: Tom McWilliam
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4. Climb the Walls

Blend an outbuilding, or the sides of your house, into the surrounding landscape by growing plants up the sides. Apple trees (LEFT) and a lacebark pine (RIGHT) are espaliered in geometric and fanlike shapes against the walls of a freestanding garage. Espalier is a pruning method—popularized in Europe as a space-saving way to cultivate fruit and a decorative technique for formal gardens—used to train small trees and shrubs flat against a wall or fence in various patterns. Key to using espalier to enhance a building’s walls (and to growing any vine or climber there, too) is using an anchoring system that suits your siding, keeps shoots from rubbing against it or adhering to it, and avoids damaging or restricting plant growth. The masonry anchors on this structure have tabs that hold soft, stretchy plastic ribbon ties (available at Amleo) for securing branches in place.
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