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Years ago I was on a historical tour in Savannah, Georgia in which they said that they choose certain crawling plants/vines that minimize damage to buildings.

What crawling plants or vines should or should not be used to minimize damage to buildings?

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  • Are you from Georgia too? Are you looking for plants that will grow in that region? – Niall C. Sep 1 '15 at 14:08
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    Do you mean 'minimize damage to buildings', or do you mean "cause minimal damage to buildings"? – Bamboo Sep 1 '15 at 15:27
  • @NiallC., I am from Georgia but no longer live there. Was just curious in regard to some potential landscaping to be done on my house. – GaTechThomas Mar 24 '16 at 14:26
  • @Bamboo, ideally, it would be to cause zero damage to buildings. I don't see the difference between the two phrases, but I'm open to explanation. :-) – GaTechThomas Mar 24 '16 at 14:28
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    @GaTechThomas - Okay, well if you say 'minimize damage to buildings' it might imply you want a plant that protects a building in some way, maybe to stop it baking in the sun - if you say 'cause minimal damage' that means what you actually meant - as little damage as possible to the building from the plant. – Bamboo Mar 24 '16 at 15:22
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It depends on the building. If the building wall is made from brick, concrete etc, then a climbing vine is unlikely to damage it. If it has a textured plaster finish, then the vine will damage that. If it is wood, then it will tend to make the wood damp, and this can encourage borer attack.

I think you're better off with a wooden house not to allow vines to attach to the timber. I have a Bougainvillea against mine, and the only damage that happens is from the nails I put into the weatherboards so that I can tie it in place. Since it likes direct sunshine, the boards behind it don't suffer from dampness.

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