How to Care for a Wisteria Tree

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Wisteria trees may appear difficult to care for, but they are not. The trees bloom in different colors, from violet and lavender to mauve and pink, and the blooming lasts up to 2 months. Some will even give a second flowering period, although this one will not be as spectacular. Once the wisteria establish, they thrive on neglect; sometimes the prettiest wisterias are found on abandoned properties.

Things You'll Need

  • Wisteria tree
  • Stake
  • Water
  • Twine
  • Pruning shears
  • Push a stake in the ground 6-12 inches deep and position it 1/2 inch away from the wisteria's trunk. Secure the wisteria’s trunk to the stake at 8-inch intervals with twine. As your wisteria grows, your steak will have to lengthen. Switching to a heavy steel pipe will hold the tree firmly. Check the ties on the tree at the beginning and end of each season to make sure they don't become too tight, which can restrict the tree's growth. Pinch off any shoots that form on the trunk.

  • During the first year of planting, the wisteria needs an inch of water per week. Be sure to water deeply each time you water. After the tree becomes established, water only if the ground becomes excessively dry.

    You don't need to worry about fertilizing your wisteria tree. If you give them too much fertilizer, they will not have many blooms. If your wisteria is growing in poor or sandy soil, you can give them a light feeding of 5-10-5 fertilizer.

  • Protect the trunk and vine parts from the wind, cold and ice. For the first two or three years, put a piece of plastic tubing around the main stem. You can buy specially made plastic tubing at the garden supply store or you can cut your own piece of plastic tubing. Pry it open far enough to put it around the stem.

    If your tree is older, tie the branches together in a criss-crossing of strings pattern. This will help prevent the wind and ice from breaking the branches.

  • Prune your tree to maintain its globe shape and keep it at a certain length. During the summer, you can prune the wisteria to the length you want it. Come fall, remove all the shoots except the first five or six on each branch. Leave the stems about six inches long. Don't worry about making a mistake on pruning. Next year, the wisteria will grow rapidly. Any mistakes made will disappear behind leaves and flowers.

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