A native honeysuckle
Why would a Clemson agent suggest planting honeysuckle? Because, as Paul Thompson told us recently, we have a native non-aggressive honeysuckle wonderfully attractive to pollinators, including hummingbirds and butterflies. Lonicera sempervirens is a modest grower with whorls of terminal clusters of red flowers. (There’s also a yellow variety.) It isn’t a thick vine, won’t cover a structure well, and needs good air circulation to prevent powdery mildew. The upper leaves are fused – perfoliate- , and the backs of all leaves are a bluish green. I planted one at my Aunt Liza’s house in Saluda on some chicken wire attached a block wall – it tumbled over and welcomed us every summer when we went there to escape the heat of the midlands. Paul said if you cut off those terminal clusters when they fade, you’ll have a succession of flowers all summer.