clematis on the fence?

beautifulboy(6-Coastal MA)July 21, 2010

We have planted a jackamanii clematis in the garden near the fence. I would like it to grow up and then across the top of the fence. What is the beast way to train the clematis to do this? Do I need to install a trellis on the fence (we would do a wooden cedar trellis in that case)? Of could I get away with just tieing it with string? I have attached a picture below (from late May)... the new clematis has been planted a little right of center at the back of the garden by the fence (also, as I think of it, there is now a top 'cap' on the fence) Any ideas will be greatly appreciated!

Here is a link that might be useful: our back garden

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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

IMHO The best thing for it to climb on it's own without a lot of help from you is wire livestock fencing. In my experience they do not climb cedar lattice or fan trellises well at all.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 5:42PM
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katie(Zone 8a NoCA)

I agree, it needs to climb on some kind of wire in front of the fence. I use green vinyl wire. It comes 3 and 4 ft high. I wrap all my 4 X 4 posts with it and also use it across metal arbors and trellis. Since you are growing Jackmanii you will be cutting it down every winter. (I cut mine back to 12" to 18"). Some people suggest letting it grow on string netting which can be cut down and thrown away every winter.


    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 6:38PM
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river_crossroads z8b Central Louisiana

I've just got baby clems right now but I'm hoping to use wire, as they have mentioned, but take it down every winter. I often use galvanized screws & before I insert them, I spray the screwheads with Rustoleum, eg, a light brown to blend in with your fence. To paint screwheads, I take a cardboard box with plastic over it, insert screws in the cardboard & spray with 2 coats of Rustoleum a week apart. Maybe livestock fencing could be painted the same way in advance if you wished. The screws get screwed in & stay in forever.

I'm hoping to rest the weight of the fencing on the screws. Then use small pieces of wire to twist & attach the livestock fencing or green vinyl wire to the painted screws; untwist the small pieces of wire to take the fencing down in the winter, so my patio will look nice.

Also in wet Louisiana we wash wood buildings once a year to get the mildew off & my fencing would already be down when it's time to wash in the early spring. KISS - Keep It Simple and Sustainable. Go ahead & laugh at the spray paint that's not part of a green lifestyle! Katie mentions cutting it down every winter - maybe someone here in your zone can give you advice about timing. Good luck & please update us here if you find something interesting that works.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 8:23AM
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beautifulboy(6-Coastal MA)

thanks everyone! Would anyone care to post some pictures? I am trying to imagine what others do..and it might be easier to get it right with a picture, if yu have some on hand.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 1:24PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

This is a private garden near me with over 100 Clematis, she covers her entire fence with this green wire and has Clematis planted the entire perimeter.

she wraps it around posts too

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 7:07PM
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