This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
This division comprises plants of the most diverse habit and character. The evergreen element is furnished almost exclusively by the numerous green and variegated Ivies. For covering a north wall nothing equals the Ivy, and some of the handsome low-growing variegated varieties are worthy of a little space in more favoured aspects. A very valuable evergreen shrub for walls or banks is the Cotoneaster microphylla, whose scarlet berries and rich dark green foliage are very effective in winter; and with this we might associate Crataegus Pyracantha. Some of the Honeysuckles are nearly or quite evergreen. The best is Lonicera brachypoda, with its prettily variegated variety aureo-reticulata, though we should mention that this species succumbs to very severe frosts. Another, though rare, evergreen climber is Ercilla spicata, which will attach itself to a wall or tree in the same way as the Ivies. When we turn to the deciduous class, we meet with greater variety, and many species with very brilliant flowers. For general purposes, where lightness and elegance are essential (for walls, trellis-work, festoons, bowers, etc.), the many species and varieties of the genus Clematis are amongst the most desirable. The large-flowered hybrid varieties of the Eastern species are exceedingly beautiful, but the fragrant C. Flammula, with small white flowers, should not be totally neglected in favour of its more showy relatives. C. montana, too, should not be omitted, on account of its early flowering season. The common White Jessamine (Jasminum officinale) should be mentioned in conjunction with Clematis Flammula. Wistaria Chinensis, with its long pendent racemes of blue flowers; and Tecoma radicans, with large panicles of orange-scarlet flowers, are two of the showiest of shrubby climbers, and suitable for covering large spaces on a south or south-western aspect. Several of the hardy Honeysuckles are esteemed for the agreeable fragrance of their less pretentious flowers. The varieties of the hardy Passion Flower (Passiflora coerulea) succeed well against a south wall, especially in the south and west in the vicinity of the sea. Cydonia Japonica, Jasminum nudiflorum, and some species of Lonicera, produce their flowers in winter or spring before the appearance of the leaves. Amongst Roses we have a great variety of climbing or trailing habit, and, in addition to these, many of the tenderer varieties of the Tea and other sections are commonly trained against a wall. The Climbing Roses belong to the groups Systylae and Banksianae, for particulars of which see pp. 167 to 171. We may mention here Rennet's Seedling, or Thoresbyana, as one of the most vigorous and free-flowering of this class. Lycium Barbarum, although not very showy, is a good climber for planting in confined places in towns. Periploca Graeca, Wistaria brachybotrys, W. frutescens, and other species, Jasmi-num revolutum, Bignonia capreolata, Schizandra Chinensis, and Parechites Thunbergii, are less commonly grown deciduous flowering shrubby climbers, and for the greater part require slight protection in most parts of Britain.
A few deciduous shrubs of this class are included on account of their ornamental foliage. The one most widely known is Vitis quinquefolia, the Virginian Creeper. There are several other Vines in cultivation, but none that surpasses the foregoing. They include several North American and one Japanese species, besides some peculiar varieties of the common Grape Vine. Aristolochia Sipho and Menispermum Canadense have large cordate leaves, and are very effective when associated with some of the more brilliant-flowered shrubs. The former is rather tender, and should only be planted in sheltered situations.