|Dramatic, decorative flowers, Beijing China|
Bonsai. Trees, miniaturized by growing in shallow pots, are carefully shaped to make them look like they are growing in a wild place
You plan, clip, shape. A wide variety of trees can be bonsaied. Many grow slowly, live a long time, and can be left to your heirs.
|Another bonsai. Very beautiful. Easily 40 years old.|
|topiary dog, Ladew Gardens, Monkton, Maryland|
|hedge with animals, Mexico City|
|plant lady, Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, Maryland|
Ivies and other vines such as the creeping fig (Ficus pumila) climb a frame and if, like the plant lady above, the frame has a generally upward shape without places where the plant will be under the shade of the frame, the plants will readily create a topiary.
These, however, in Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China, are on a grand scale and do have the bottoms of the globes in shade and nearly upside down (most plants resist having their roots above their leaves and flowers). I didn't get to investigate closely, but the flowers are surely potted plants placed in a frame.
This, from Japan, is a dramatic effect and much simpler. Here plants in pots are supported in an ascending spiral around a central column.
But you don't need to buy a special support, surely you have an old piece of furniture you can cover in plants:
|That is not cloth and stuffing, those are plants. Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD|
More practical, if less dramatic, is a trellis for your squashes and cucumbers to climb before dangling their fruit down. These work better if you guide the expanding shoots where you want them to go.
|Melon hanging from trellis, southern China|
|Espaliered tree, Singapore|
|Espaliered pears, Basel, Switzerland|
For all of these techniques, you can find instructions and suggestions online.
You can see what other people have done with time and plants. Impressive!