Caring for a Honeysuckle?

Category Advice
Honeysuckle plants are available in a variety of colors and configurations, from the traditional vine to plants that have been trained as small trees AKA grown as standards. These plants like sun, generally tolerate most soil types and may need a bit of fertilizer such as green tea if they seem a bit puny or sickly. The vines need support. This is a page about caring for a honeysuckle.


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September 7, 2006


I just bought a honeysuckle tree. As a child I can remember the wonderful sweet smell of it. Mine does not seem to smell like anything. It's a really tall bush (tree?). I bought it already attached to a trellis. What is wrong with my tree? Also, how do you take care of them? Thank you so much.

Hardiness Zone: 7a

Dana from Newkensington, PA


This is an interesting question-one that I have often pondered myself. Why is it that the flowers of our youth seemed to be laden with a sweeter fragrance than those we sniff today?

Scientific studies indicate that children have a better sense of smell than their parents or grandparents, so initially, I simply chalked it up to a gap in my olfactory memory. I guessed that my nose had simply become dulled and desensitized by age.


I've since come to realize that there may be a better explanation. Fragrance, you see, is all in the genes. When you think about it, the flowers of our youth were more fragrant, but they also tended to be blander in color. They most certainly lacked the hybridization (and the resulting vibrant and sometimes downright zany color patterns) that we see in flowers today. This is especially true of roses, which have been endlessly tinkered with over time in order to develop stronger colors, straighter stems and bigger blooms-mostly at the expense of their fragrance.

This could be what you're seeing with your honeysuckle tree. Extensive hybridization. Either that, or you may have inadvertently purchased one of several varieties that happen to produce less fragrant blooms.


Keep your fingers crossed that as time marches on and your tree continues to mature, you'll see an increase in fragrant flowers. In the meantime, we can all sleep peacefully knowing that plant breeders around the world are collectively devising ways to bring back the "fragrant genes" so often missing in today's flowers.

Tips for Care:

In general, very little care is required to successfully grow honeysuckle.
  • Your climber will grow best in full sun is very tolerant of most soil types.
  • Give it a sturdy support and keep growth in check with occasional pruning.
Also, keep in mind that many honeysuckle species are considered invasive in certain parts of the country.



August 20, 20060 found this helpful
Best Answer

There are several varieties of Honeysuckle. Some grow tall, some climb, some have colorful blooms and yet others have a scent. Sadly it looks as though yours has no scent.


As it was attached to a trellis it is probably a climber, needs little attention except to train it in the direction you want it to grow. You should also cut out dead or damaged growth and thin it out every so often.

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July 13, 2008

Can anyone help me with my poor plant?

By Tammy


August 1, 20080 found this helpful
Best Answer

Your pictuer looks like you have used sawdust for mulch (?), that could be the problem. Get rid of the sawdust - water and feed well - if you really have a need for the mulch, try compost - good luck with your honeysuckle.

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