The gardening website, Green Beam, featured Hydrangea anomala ssp. petiolaris today, calling it "a gentleman among vines".
A native of Japan and China, it blooms in summer with 6 to 10-inch flowers.
Traditionally grown on trees, it can also be trained on a strong trellis - growth is 50-feet over several years - expect slow growth.
Hardy in zones 4 to 7 (zone 8 may be too hot and humid)
Prefers medium wet but well drained soil in shade. Likes a mulch of compost or peat moss to keep it cool and moist.
Green Beam provided these cultivar tips: 'Skylands Giant,' from Spring Meadow, is large-flowered.
'Firefly,' also available at Spring Meadow, is a yellow-variegated climbing hydrangea. In spring this plant really shines. As summer progresses its gold margin turns to chartreuse.
Moonlight Magic ('Kuga Variegated') from Hines Horticulture has bright-pink new growth that turns to a golden color before turning to dark green, providing three layers of color. Large, white flowers in summer. Golden, variegated foliage continues well into fall.
Spring Meadow Nursery 800.633.8859 www.springmeadownursery.com.
Hines Horticulture 866.701.3330 www.hineshort.com.