Are you making this common gardening mistake with your climbers?

Gardening expert Sarah Raven is shining a light on this common gardening task we've all been getting wrong

Compilation image of a climbing rose, clematis on a trellis and vegetable garden with runner beans and vine to support Sarah Raven's advice for tying in climbing plants
(Image credit: Future)

No matter how experienced a gardener you are there is always room for improvement, as we recently discovered after finding out we've all been doing a simple garden task wrong. Who knew there was a better way of tying in climbing plants? 

Sometimes whilst we chase the up-and-coming garden trends we can get sidetracked and completely forget to master the basics of gardening. Whether you're training one of the best privacy plants to cover a garden fence or starting vegetable gardening for beginners you may also be making this rather frustrating mistake. 

Thanks to Sarah Raven, a professional gardener and author, maintaining climbing plants just got easier and more efficient.

Sarah Raven's savvy tip for tying in climbing plants 

Turns out it takes a little more thought than you may suspect. There are very few gardening gurus we would entrust our plant's lives to but Sarah Raven is certainly one of those. That's why we were immediately all ears when we came across an Instagram reel from the gardener. 

The reel, posted recently on @SarahRavensGarden, showed Sarah tying a climber plant onto a log which sounds simple enough, however, her technique blew us away. Instead of tying the plant's stem directly onto the support log, Sarah has another method. 

"Don’t tie your plant directly to your support – this doesn’t give it any space to move whilst it grows," reads the caption. Allowing your plant space is one of the easiest gardening tips for beginners and applies to pot sizes, seedling trays and flower beds. 

headshot of garden expert Sarah Raven holding flowers
Sarah Raven

Since the publication of her first book, The Cutting Garden, Sarah has led the way in introducing a new kind of productive gardening. Her aim is to create intense colour and beauty, combined with a practical and easy-to-achieve approach. Her popular gardening podcast Grow, Cook, Eat, Arrange has achieved 4.1 million downloads. She’s published 15 books and runs

"Instead, create a crossover of string by knotting your twine once around your support, then tie in a second knot around the stem of your plant," Sarah advises. 

It's important to double-knot the plant in place to allow more room for the stem to expand as it grows upwards. Using this method keeps the plant secure without completely restricting its growth, it allows for natural movement. 

woman tying a bamboo structure with twine

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Who would have thought there was a wrong way to do something as simple as tying climbing plants to support? Once again we're thankful for the wisdom a professional gardener has to offer and this isn't the first time Sarah has helped us create our best gardens.

The author and podcaster also shared her ideas around mosaic gardening which is the more refined, structured counterpart to the rewilding trend which Sarah also often talks about on her social accounts.

Should you be looking for more expert tips, why not try out Monty Don's foolproof tomato growing advice or perhaps expertise on keeping roses flowering longer

Emily Smith
Digital lifestyle writer

Emily joined woman&home as a staff writer after finishing her MA in Magazine Journalism from City University in 2023. After writing various health and news content, she now specialises in lifestyle and home writing where she covers all things cleaning, interiors and homeowning.