want to plant a clematis here...photo included

bgaviator(7)April 24, 2013

I have never planted Clematis before, but I really want to. I am scared off though by their high prices at the garden centers though...most of the ones I see are $20-25! That seems ridiculous to me, so I'm on the lookout for cheaper prices.....that being said, based on my photo, I am interested in having them grow up the iron columns you see on the porch. This is south facing, and gets full blazing sun......what variety should I consider, and how do I get this plant started?
A coworker of mine told me just to put like a bamboo stake next to it and it will start working its way up.....will there be anything I need to do to the iron columns to get it to climb, like adding a net trellis, or will it climb just fine the way the columns are now? Thanks.

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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Many Clematis are going to grow too tall for that fence. There are not many under six to eight feet even with annual pruning. They want to grow up not out. A climbing rose might be easier to train to grow up in the middle and then spread out to the sides to cover the whole fence and stay short.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 12:05PM
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oh, I was really only interested in having them go up the tall columns, not the shorter middle portion. Or is this a waste of a plant since the columns themselves are so narrow?

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 12:52PM
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sandyl(Zone 6B -7)

Please keep in mind that clematis in hot blaszing sun will have a period in med summer where they will have whats referred to as med summer burn out: Thats when they have completed their bloom periods and most if not all the leaves will turn brown, concider hyacinth beans, they can take a good amount of sun and will not burn out like clematis do during med summer. I have the same conditions of blaszing hot sun on my front porch and this year i'm going to plant hyacinth bean's and cypress vines. I grown 25 plus clematis put I know not to put them on my front porch due to no shade and 105 degree's. All my clematis are grown in morning sun and afternoon shade for that very reason.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 2:50PM
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The tall columns are too narrow - you want your clematis to have multiple stems. It will get wider with each year, so after a year or two it will be too wide for just one pole like that. The middle shorter portion though will work great if you chose your plants right. Crystal Fountain, Pink Fantasy, Arctic Queen will happily stay under 6' with light pruning. Cezanne grows to only about 30-36".

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 9:45PM
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wow I really like the looks of that pink fantasy. Thanks for those ideas! I am a little concerned about this Clematis burn that another responder mentioned. This is a south facing area, and it will get the full brunt of the sun. So I don't want to be wasting my time or money if this plant won't work well here.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 6:06AM
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....also, i I do decide to do a Clematis, do I need to weave like clear fishing line across the iron railing so the plant has more to cling to?

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 6:37AM
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opheliathornvt zone 5

I have clems that would straddle that gap and climb with no problem and others that would need some help. I usually use clear fishing line until I know how the clem will grow, but when I prune in the spring, I invariably cut the line no matter how careful I think I'm being. I guess I'd start with the fish line and see.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 9:16AM
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bgaviator - If you buy a type 3 pruning plant, plant it deeply enough, mulch it and water adequately, I don't think you will have issues with it browning out. Maybe it depends on one's zone, but my clematis are mostly planted in all day sun, and at times we are warmer than New Orleans in midsummer. I don't have many early blooming type 2 pruning plants, though. Most of mine are type 3 which are supposed to be easier to grow.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 4:23PM
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Type 3 will grow tall, I believe shorter varieties are all type 2, thought I might be mistaken here. If you keep your clematis well watered and heavily mulched it should be fine in full sun. It might not like a southern exposure in zone 7-8 with a solid wall behind it - sort of a frying pan situation. With adequate airflow behind it, like in your case, it should do quite well. I don't know if Pink Fantasy bleaches in the sun, mine is in semi-shade for a part of the day, maybe somebody else with it in full sun will chime in. Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 9:48PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I don't see the tall poles you are talking about. sorry.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 9:52PM
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Buyhorse, If you look closely at the end of the iron fence portion close to the white door you can see that there is a column of iron as well as in the middle. They are kind of hard to see as they blend in with the windows.

bgaviator- things you need to consider about clematis is that they need shaded roots which you can obtain by planting a low growing plant close to its feet. As nhbabs said plant the rootball a few inches deeper so that the roots stay cool (this also encourages more stems from the rootball). Also for full sun you want a darker color of bloom as the lighter ones will fade in the sun.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 11:21PM
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Here are a few type 3 clematis that should stay under 2 meters (about 6 1/2 feet) and that I have seen on the lists of either Brushwood, Hummingbird Farm, or Joy Creek:
Dark Eyes
Moonfleet (Evipo046)
Amethyst Beauty (Evipo043)

and there are more that will stay under 2 1/2 meters (about 8 feet.)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 11:49PM
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Hopefully you have decided to plant clematis. They are magical when in bloom. My neighbors have them planted on mailboxes and they are beautiful. I planted mine last year and they have taken off beautifully this spring. I have mine planted inside an obelisk. I bought mine on clearance at Lowes for 6 or 7 dollars. Check the clearance section. And this week Aldis has smaller ones for 4.99. Of course these are the more generic ones (I suppose). But if you want to plant and see what works, this might be a good start. Most of all be patient. They won't do much the first year. Good Luck!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2013 at 9:36PM
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gigim(8A SC)

I find the best prices and largest quantity of Clemis right now, just before Mothers Day - guess they are popular as a MD gift. Lowes and HD have many - not too many variaties mostly Nelly Moser and Jackmanii

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 11:06AM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

Some of our garden centers have half off sales in late June which brings the plants down to more affordable prices. The best sales in my area are fall when I can pick up well rooted gallon plants for as low as $1.00-$5.00.

I agree with grow that clematis will outgrow your posts in width.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2013 at 1:44PM
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