Are there any clematis that will bloom well the first year?

prairiemoon2 z6 MAFebruary 22, 2010

I wanted to try a clematis in a LRG pot on a tripod this year. I was hoping I would get something that would offer at least some bloom this year. Are there any that might do that? Also, I am in zone 6, could I leave the clematis in the pot unprotected over the winter, or could I dig it out of the container and plant it in the ground in the fall? I don't have a cold garage where I could park it for the winter.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Whether a clematis would bloom the first year or not is really going to depend on the individual clematis and especially how large the clematis is when you originally purchase it (ie how old the clematis). I suggest you purchase a one gallon sized clematis or larger (if possible) and let it be of the type III pruning group. They bloom on new wood so you wouldn't have to worry about there not being old wood for it to bloom on. There are some of the type Is such as the alpinas and macropetalas that do bloom on old wood but the few that I have grown also will have blooms that develop on current year's growth (these types unfortunately don't like our southern heat and humidity to do well in the long run for me). :(

As for winter hardiness in zone 6a, most clematis are generally rated as hardy to zone 4 or even 3. Most of the type IIIs are extremely hardy and the type I macropetalas and alpinas are naturally from colder climates. Since growing in a pot generally lowers the zone hardiness ratings by 1 or so zone, they should survive in your zone over the winter in a pot. If you have consistent snow cover, that will act as insulation and further protect the plants in the pot. You could even scavenge some old bales of straw that people use for decorations around the fall and Halloween and surround the pot with them for insulation and added protection. Realize that the larger the pot and the soil mass, the more protection that will afford the clematis during inclement winter weather.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 7:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Well, that is a surprising answer. I was expecting to be told that I would probably not get flowers the first year and shouldn't grow one in a pot. lol But I thought I'd ask anyway, so, I'm glad I did.

That makes a lot of sense. I usually try to allow for 2 zones lower for something in a pot above ground. I didn't realize there were so many clematis that were that hardy. Buying a gallon size is not a problem either.

I saw on another post, that clematis don't like to be moved once planted, so if that is true, I suppose I should choose a pot carefully that it will stay in for awhile? Which brings me to one last question....if someone could recommend a 'foolproof' or 'easy', disease resistant large flowering clemaits that would perform in a location with morning shade? Comtesse de Bouchard is one that has been suggested to me and I wondered if there are any others?

Thank you nckvilledudes.... :-)

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 8:42AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I worked for awhile for a wholesale grower who supplied clematis to most of the west coast nurseries including many of the mail order sources often discussed here. Sales to the retailers (not the mail order nurseries) were highest when the plants were in bloom, in #1 containers or larger - it is hard for gardeners to resist any clem in full bloom :-) I'd agree with Miguel that most #1 sized clems would be expected to bloom their first season.

Moving (transplanting) an inground clematis is a bit different from container culture. Some clems are just not well suited to being grown in a container, as they rapidly develop large root systens that outgrow the pot. This is the same reasoning behind the transplant caution -- large root systems are difficult to move without damage. I grow a number of clems in containers and the smallest size pot I'd consider is about the equivalent to a 5 gallon.

I'd look at some of the 'patio' clematis, if they are available in your area. These are hybrids that have been bred for compact growth and heavy flowering at a very young age and are extremely well-suited - even intended - for container culture. I have 'Picardy' growing in a container myself.

Here is a link that might be useful: Evison's patio clematis

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 10:40AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chills71(Zone 6b Mi)


I have looked for a while for a Vienetta (from Evison) but haven't found any locally. (I did see one 3 years ago, before we knew we were going to stay here and I didn't want to get one with us planning on a posible move within the next 6 months...little did I know we weren't going anywhere and the plant would be difficult to locate henceforth). Is there a reason this particular variety has seemed to just vanish?



    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 6:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Piluu is compact growing and a heavy bloomer too.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 10:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nckvilledudes(7a NC)

I thought of that just as I saw your post BorS. Another compact one is Konigskind which is purple colored (sometimes listed as Climador). There is also a pink version of Konigskind called Rosa Konigskind that I would assume would be similarly compact. I am sure there are others but Piilu and Konigsking are type II clematis I have had personal experience with.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 6:16AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

The Pot I was thinking of using is probably that large, Gardengal. I usually go by the diameter measurement and mine is maybe a 20-22" diameter. It would be interesting to see how many gallons it holds.

Yes, caution about transplanting. I have one clematis, Duchess of Edinberg and it grows okay, has a dozen blooms on it every year. I think it could prosper in a little more sun, but I hate to risk moving it, so I might keep it there. I plan on pruning it down to the ground this year, and hopefully pay a little more attention to it and see how it does, rather than move it. I usually just cut it back to buds. All of that is a little OT, but came up because I was wondering..... if I would leave the clematis in the pot above ground all winter, or dig it out and plant it in the fall. It was suggested that I bury the whole pot in the ground in winter, and that seems excessive to me. It is a LARGE pot to dig in! And it doesn't seem like the plant would appreciate being dug out every fall.

I saw 'Piilu' on the International Clematis Society's Beginner's List. I see that 'Piilu' is hardy to zone 2 and I wonder if that would allow me to just leave it in the container all winter? I do like the look of it too. The only drawback with 'Piilu' is that it is a #2 Pruner. I called the Clematis supplier in my area yesterday and they were suggesting a #3 pruner if I wanted to have bloom as long as possible. She said the older growth doesn't usually make it through the winter very well here. I did see that they carry 'Piilu'. Everything else about 'Piilu' seems to fit. She was recommending 'Blue Angel' and 'Prince Charles' or the viticellis. I think I like the 'Piilu' maybe a little more. My pot will go next to the main gate to my garden next to a 4 ft picket fence and the gate is painted a dark 'boysenberry' color and the picket fence is cedar color.

Gardengal, I saw 'patio' clematis only at Lowe's in my area last year. I thought the blooms were tiny, if I remember right. Maybe they weren't the Evison varieties. They look good in the photos from your link. the Angelique and Ooh La La look very nice. "Picardy' is a very pretty color. I wonder about their hardiness, since they mention they can be enjoyed indoors before planting outside? I wonder if you can grow them like houseplants? Interesting idea!

nckvilledudes, I saw a photo of that Konigskind. Very pretty and interesting looking. I see it only gets 4ft high. It also mentions you can grow it indoors. Very interesting.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 7:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

PM.....I wonder about that "growing indoors" too :-) In fact, I posted about it here sometime ago. I think the suggestion is made only because the plants are compact and bloom so readily, so they lend themselves to being indoors much better than a larger selection but I'd still not recommend them being growing indoors long term. AFA flower size is concerned, the ones I've seen locally produce normal sized LFH blooms. As to hardiness, I'd expect them to be as hardy as most other LFH's.

Chills, all I can say is that 'Vienetta' is a florida type and many folks find these less hardy and trickier to grow than most other types of clems. Whether or not it is still available by mail order I can't say, but that may be an explanation for why you can't find it locally.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 11:14AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I have 'Prince Charles' and it grew to 7' it's first year. I would not call it suitable for a container with a tripod. This year will be it's fourth and I prune it to about foot each spring and I pruned again in late summer the first year.

'Piilu' is one of my longest blooming Clematis and it is on an obelisk that is less than 4' tall. I hard prune it to 6" every Feb.

yes, you could leave it in the container all winter.

I bought 'Rosa Konigskind' from Chalk Hill but it died before ever blooming so I can't comment on it.

I have killed 4 floridas. :(

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 2:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chills71(Zone 6b Mi)

Gardengal, I've got 2 C. Florida Sieboldii and C. Florida Flore Pleno in the ground already. I just wanted to get Vienetta as well.

strangely enough, the hardest clematis I've grown has got to be Triternata Rubromarginata. Darn thing seems to go like gangbusters until mid summer and then it just browns out and leaves me wondering if it will return the next year time after time.

Prairiemoon, i'd try Piilu were I you. Even if you lose the bloom on old wood, it still blooms on new wood as well (from what I recall). Its not like its a Montana variety where if the old wood is killed you get no blooms.


    Bookmark   February 26, 2010 at 8:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nckvilledudes(7a NC)

I had the same experience with TRM as well Chills. Did exactly the same thing you described yours did. I know it wasn't overwatering as this was during one of our hot summers. It was kept watered but not overwatered and it just browned out and never returned the next spring. In a way it was good it happened as somehow I had managed to mix up the tags on two clematis and I had not planted the TRM where it should have been planted.

Yep, Piilu will bloom on new wood. Mine has been pruned as a type III for every year I have had it except for this year where I am trying to see if I can get the double blooms on the older wood.

BorS, my Florida Sieboldii didn't die on me but rather I removed it from the garden since it seemed to wilt everytime it was getting ready to bloom two seasons in a row. Decided if I wasn't going to get any blooms, why have it take up valuable real estate in the garden! LOL

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 7:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Gardengal, I wonder why you don't recommend growing the Konigskind indoors? If I found a less expensive one, I would try it indoors. Especially if it would bloom in winter. If it didn't work out, you could always grow it outdoors. Right? wouldn't recommend 'Prince Charles' for a container because of it's height? The tripod I am putting in my pot is 8ft tall... [g]....I usually grow peas on it.

I may very well have to try a few containers. Piilu is on my list, Chills.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 9:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

PM, let me put it this way.......plants that grow naturally in temperate climates - like clematis - do not make successful long term houseplants. Indoor conditions do not provide the necessary humidity, light requirements or seasonal variations in temperatures that these plants need to thrive and normally receive out of doors. I'm sure one could keep them happy for awhile but IMO, these are just NOT houseplants, anymore than hydrangeas, azaleas or miniroses are true houseplants :-)

And I've yet to hear reports from anyone who has grown these "houseplant" type clematis indoors longer than a single season. If there is no vernalization, I seriously doubt there would be any rebloom and unless one can manipulate growing conditions to the same extent they do under greenhouse condtions, it is also rather unlikely that they would bloom outside of their normal bloom season - i.e., not in the middle of winter.

It is always interesting to hear of different experiences with different clems. I love my TRM (in fact, one of the few clems I moved with me). It is a big, happy, well blooming vine :-) Wish I could say the same for the multiple floridas I have tried over the years as I really like that flower form and coloring. I may try again.......

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 10:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA see, there's where an education in horticulture comes in When you put it that way, I can completely see your point. I don't enjoy hydrangeas or azaleas or miniroses as house*plants for the very reason you offer. Clematis outdoors. :-)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 11:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Wholeheartedly agree with gardengal. Clematis are not meant to be houseplants unless you have a greenhouse or conservatory where they could experience winter like conditions.

Maybe your new garden will be more hospitable to the floridas this time Pam.

Prairemoon, the height of your obelisk is not the issue. I think the point BorS was trying to make was that a clematis that gets eight feet tall is likely to have a large root system and might not like it in a pot unless it was very huge.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 11:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Miguel, one can only hope :-) It does seem to have a very benign microclimate, no doubt due to all the large trees that surround me and the proximity to the water. But all those trees also mean a fair amount of shade - not very many sunny locations for clems. And I already have a few more than I can figure out where to plant - LOL!! That said, my cirrhosa bloomed beautifully this winter even in shade and the 'Apple Blossom' armandii is getting ready to burst.

I do have a sunroom. Maybe I'll try a florida in there as the UK sites so often recommend. It is unheated so should provide a proper vernalization, although it never gets much below 45F.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 12:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Why not give it a try and see how it does. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

I know what you mean about having too many clematis. I have seeds germinating and wonder what I am going to do with all the seedlings until I determine whether they are worth keeping or not. Of course, I have showed restraint with ordering ones for spring delivery. Only three ordered so far. One is a special form of viorna from Seneca Hill Perennials linked below. The blooms are much more elongated than any viorna I have ever seen. The other two plants are coming from Joy Creek--Clematis 'Fuji Kahori' (Chikuma) and Clematis 'Yugiri' (Ozawa/Chikuma). I am such a sucker for those bell shaped clematis.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 1:34PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Is this clematis 'dead legs'?
Hello, I'm new to this site and growing clematis I...
Anyone Heard of Summerstone Nursery?
I found this site accidentally - they have about 25...
alameda/zone 8
Clematis Question?
I am just giving my clematis (Guernsey Cream) a very...
What plants do you use to help shade clematis roots?
I'm just curious to know what are the names of some...
Need advice for rehabing clematis
I had a Duchess of Edinburgh (Type 2) growing on both...
Sponsored Products
Mini Ashburn Solid Bronze Coat Hook - Living Bronze
Signature Hardware
Sunset Floral Arrangement
$219.00 | FRONTGATE
Eliot Loveseat - Key Largo Grape Purple
Joybird Furniture
Hi Fi Giclee Glow 13 1/2" Antique Brass Swag Pendant
Lamps Plus
Andorra Quilt Set
$54.99 | zulily
Manor Oil Rubbed Bronze One-Light Wall Sconce
$81.00 | Bellacor
Weston Pendant by Philips Forecast Lighting
$178.00 | Lumens
Modern Island Side Table
$169.99 | Dot & Bo
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™