how quickly do clematis grow?

violetta1976(8 Portland OR)July 22, 2007

Hello all,

I read somewhere that clematis in pruning group C should be given a hard prune - to about 12" - every winter and that they grow back again before blooming. My goodness! How quickly do clematis grow?

I started late because I moved, and only planted my clematis a month ago. I followed the instructions I was given and pruned them back really hard right after re-potting them, and thus didn't expect to see much from them this year. Now I'm wondering - do you think I might actually see them grow and start to crawl up my balcony railing this year? Or was I right in thinking that in the next year or two is when I'll really get to enjoy them?

Total aside - I'm seeing buds and new leaves on them and I'm pretty excited about it. :0)

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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Depends on how old and established the clematis was when you planted it. If you purchased an older established in the pot plant and planted it, I wouldn't be surprised if it grew up and flowered this year. Solina was planted in my garden last fall as a one gallon sized plant, came up this spring and got 3 or so feet tall and then promptly wilted. I cut it back to ground level and in less than two months it is back up and developing flower buds right now.

Smaller plants may not do this when planted in the garden. They may sit and look as if they are doing nothing. In reality they are developing their root systems so that next year they will explode out out of the groung. I have several that were smallish this spring when I purchased them and planted them and they are just sitting there looking at me. Next year I expect they will produce more top growth and flowers.

Patience can sometimes be the key with clematis.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 11:50AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Since you mentioned in your previous post that these are potted in gallon pots they must have been very small when you bought them. They are not going to be able to stay in gallon pots for long....

You should not expect huge growth this season but type IIIs are capable of growing 10' or more in a single season. After they mature.

You were right to cut them back when you potted them. You should do it again in early spring too and every early spring.
Do it around President's Day, same as roses here.

I planted 6 type III's last summer from gallon pots and they are all now about 10' tall. I cut them back when I planted. I also cut them back in Feb. I also pinched them back constantly until they started to bud in May. They are still that tall.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 12:13PM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)


    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 2:29PM
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I'm really glad to hear that smaller plants might just sit there until their roots are established. I ordered Clematis Routel this spring and planted them in a pot. they grew about a foot, maybe a little more, and produced several flowers. But now they are just sitting there.

They are supposed to grow to 5 to 6 feet tall, so I imagine I need to take them out of the container and plant them in the ground. Is this correct?

Sorry to butt in violetta1976! I hope you don't mind.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 12:45AM
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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Dee it depends on if the small plant you originally got and potted up has matured. Check to see if you can see roots coming in the bottom holes of your pot. If so, then the plant can probably go into the ground. Being in as hot a zone as you are, I might wait until later in the fall or early winter to plant them so they can get established during the cooler months in your garden. Clematis, like other plants, put on a majority of their root growth during the cooler months. In your zone, that might be in the winter months (Dec. Jan. Feb. Mar.).

    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 3:34AM
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Thanks so much for the information nckvilledudes! I'll wait to plant them in the fall (not by the calendar but by the temperature. Sometimes our fall doesn't start until early December.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 11:14AM
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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

No problem Dee!!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 12:33PM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)

Nckvilledudes or buyorsell, one of you told me when the best time to my clematis into bigger pots is and I forget what you said. Was it mid-fall or was it around President's Day when I prune? I don't *think* it was right away, but I could be mistaken...

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 12:42PM
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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Violetta, you can transplant into larger sized pots at any time since you are not really going to be disturbing the rootball much by doing so. The only limiting factor would be how many vines you have, if they are twirled around a trellis, etc.

BorS recommended pruning them around President's Day. See further above in this thread.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 2:16PM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)

They aren't attached to anything yet, so I may as well do it now before they get any bigger. Thanks!

(Oh, and re: the pruning on President's Day thing - I was asking if I should repot at the same time I prune, not when to prune.)

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 2:43PM
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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

If you prune when you repot, it will make the repotting much easier!

    Bookmark   August 2, 2007 at 3:54AM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)

Thanks! They're still really small, so I doubt it'll be a problem. :0)

    Bookmark   August 2, 2007 at 1:06PM
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