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Clematis comes in a wide range of colors, bloom times and bloom sizes.  Color is the primary reason to take into consideration when choosing clematis. But be aware that different varieties bloom as early as June and as late as September, and the size of the bloom will vary from 1 inch to 5 inches across.  Most clematis are considered fully hardy in Zone 4.

Tips for Growing Clematis
Light Requirements
events & seminars Clematis prefer at least 6 hours of sun.
events & seminars They prefer shade on the root system.
Soil
events & seminars Clematis prefers fertile, well drained, light soil.
Planting
events & seminars Dig hole large enough and deep enough so that at least one or two pair of buds, often 3-4” up the stem, is below ground level.
events & seminars Amend existing soil with organic compost.
Spacing
events & seminars Plant 5 feet apart from other clematis.
Mulch
events & seminars Mulch with 1-2” of organic mulch.
events & seminars Mulching cools the soil, conserves water and helps control weeds.
Watering
events & seminars After planting, water well.
events & seminars Prefers moist soil, not saturated.
Fertilizer
events & seminars Fertilize with a granular fertilizer such as Bachman’s 10–20–10 each spring.
events & seminars Apply a water-soluble fertilizer in June and July.
Grooming
events & seminars Clematis vines require support, such as a trellis. 
events & seminars Leave 2-3” of space left behind the trellis for best results.
events & seminars Regularly weed the garden.
events & seminars See below for tips on pruning clematis.
Winter Care
events & seminars Mulch with straw or chopped leaves 4–6” inches deep after several hard frosts, when the ground is frozen.
events & seminars Uncover early spring once the ground begins to thaw.

Pruning Clematis

Pruning encourages more blooming; although understanding when to prune specific varieties is important. There are 3 groups of clematis that require different pruning techniques.
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Group 1: Blooms early on last year’s growth.
a. Prune by removing all dead and weak stems immediately after flowering.
b. After pruning, the new growth will develop through the season for next year's blooms.
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Group 2: Blooms between mid and late summer on both last year’s growth and new growth.
a. Only clean out dead wood when the plant gets overgrown.
b. Remove dead and weak stems in late spring; prune after first flush of growth.
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Group 3: Blooms between mid and late summer on new growth.
a. Eliminate all of last year’s growth and leave the lowest pair of live buds on the plant to begin the current season’s growth.

Troubleshooting Problems with Clematis

Problem

Cause(s)

Solution(s)

Clematis Wilt
events & seminars Appears early to mid summer during periods of drought.
events & seminars Some horticulturists believe it is a fungal disorder.
events & seminars Prevention through proper planting techniques listed above.
events & seminars Apply systemic fungicide monthly beginning in the spring.
Leaf Spot
events & seminars The fungus survives winter and releases spores in spring and early summer, which infect the new growth
events & seminars Appears as small, water-soaked spots; later, these spots become large, tan lesions, with red margins.
events & seminars Remove and properly dispose of all infected stems.
events & seminars Fungicide sprays can aid in controlling this disease.

Additional Bachman’s Information Sheets
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Dividing Perennials
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Perennials
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Perennials for Fall Interest
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Perennials for Spring Interest
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Perennials for Summer Interest
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Perennials for the Shade
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Vines

 

Bachman's Floral, Gift & Garden Centers
Your local garden expert since 1885.
bachmans.com | ©Bachman's 2012

Select source information provided by the University of Minnesota Extension, www.extension.umn.edu.

Last Updated: May 2012

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