I would like to plant vines that will hold together the crumbling brick at the front of my house in Toronto. Southern exposure, dry clay soil that can be improved, with some shade from 2 large maples.
Thank you for your inquiry. While a vine can be used to mask an unsightly wall, it can not be used to hold together a crumbling wall. If a wall is structurally unsound, it is best to have it looked at by the appropriate professional.
If you are looking just to mask what you feel is unsightly, there are a several factors to consider in selecting a suitable vine for your growing conditions.
First, the two maples which are in close proximity, will be using up most of the moisture and nutrients in the soil. These maples may also be casting a lot of shade on the wall – consider how many hours of sunlight the vine would receive.
If the wall is receiving many hours of sun, heat can be reflected back from the wall. Some trees and vines don’t appreciate the reflected heat.
Consider also the area of wall which you want to cover. Many vines are very aggressive and grow rapidly. Select one with the height and spread that fits your needs.
Once planted, water well and mulch to preserve moisture.
Visit your local garden centre to select a vine that serves your purpose – one that tolerates partial shade to full sun and a southern exposure that can be hot in the height of summer.