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Complicated?

Posted by kimcoco Zone 5, Wisconsin (My Page) on
Tue, Aug 5, 08 at 0:05

How complicated will my life be if I plant both a type 2 and type 3 clem at the base of my lilac tree? I plan to prune down the type 3 annually.

Also, is there any reason NOT to have clems climb a row of arborvitae trees?


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RE: Complicated?

Type 2's will bloom on new wood also. You could hard prune both of them every spring and that would make your pruning easy. I think it would be very difficult after a few years to hard prune one and not the other when grown on the same shrub. I grow lots of clematis on my arborvitae hedge and haven't had any problems. The clematis will need more water as the shrubs will take a lot of it. I have even cut the bottoms out of 5 gallon plastic buckets and sunk those in the ground and planted the clematis in it. It keeps the shallow dense arborvitae roots away from the clematis so it can get established easier. I think the lighter colors show up better against the dark green hedge if seen from a distance. How tall is your hedge? Huldine is a great one for a tall hedge. It easily runs 20' up my hedge.

Huldine growing up an evergreen hedge


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RE: Complicated?

  • Posted by kimcoco Zone 5, Wisconsin (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 6, 08 at 0:56

Karen, I viewed some of your pics on another post, and I agree that the lighter clems stand out better against the foliage. Love your pics, BTW.

I have five clems on order, and I've been contemplating where to put them...Mary Rose (Flore Pleno), Carmencita, Negritianka, Avante Garde and Minuet. I already have a Huldine (and two Alba Luxurians) in other areas of my yard.

I was thinking of the clems on order, Minuet would probably stand out the best in the foliage, but this is also the one I'd be most heartbroken to lose (and the most $$).

Marie Boisselot is the type 2 I will be planting with the lilac shrub, with a type 3. I would probably hard prune both as you suggested.

My arborvitae are about 5-6' tall...I'm still undecided where to plant my clems - the arborvitae are in an area of my yard that isn't "finished" yet, and maybe I'm better off not planting the clems there until I'm decided on the long term plan.

I'm also conflicted about the lilac tree - I've heard both sides, some say it's okay to plant with lilacs and others say not. I'm diligent in removing any new suckering from the base of the lilac (I have it trimmed up like a multi-stemmed tree with foliage only at the top portion), but I also have asiatic lilies at the base of the tree - not sure if it's good to have these planted in close proximity to the clems. ???

I could try the bucket like you mentioned, but that would also involve moving other plants around and not sure I want to go to those lengths - I'd probably run into tree roots in the process. Thinking out loud...perhaps I should try MB there first, see how she does, and then try a type 3 some time in the future?


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RE: Complicated?

If you hard prune your Marie Boisselot you will loose your double flowers. I don't know if that is important to you. It blooms double on old wood and single on new wood. I hard pruned mine this year as it was 10 years old and the base of the plant was bare and leggy. It usually blooms in May and June on old wood for me. This year after it was hard pruned it is just starting to bloom for me now and the flowers are all single. I think it would look nice in your lilac. It doesn't hurt to try it. I would only plant 1 clematis in your lilac unless it is just huge. If it doesn't work you can always move it. I only use the bucket method with arborvitaes. You would not need it for the lilac. The lilies would be fine with the clematis. Lilies like moisture and fertilizer, just like clematis. If you have other places to put your clematis I would plant the arborvitae hedge last. I usually plant the tougher small flowered species varieties on it as they can compete with the shrub better. I also grow honeysuckle vines and golden hops(it runs so put it in a barrier) on the arborvitae hedge and those do well also.
You have some very beautiful clematis on order. I hope they grow well for you. I am sure you will find just the right spot for all of them in your garden.


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RE: Complicated?

Flowerfan (Karen?),
I am in the same situation: I have very limited space in my garden and I ordered 17 new Clematis for this fall delivery (am I greedy or what?). My arborvitae hedge is young (3-4' tall, 6.5' apart).
How far from the Thujas' trunks would you recommend planting group III Clematis? Should I plant them in front of the Thujas or on the side? You bucket method sounds interesting. I thought about using a cardboard concrete cylinder tube instead of bucket. The diameter of the tube is 1' and you can cut it to any length. Also, it is fairly biodegradable. What do you think about this idea?
Love your slideshow! Your plants look very healthy.
Kim, I hope you do not mind asking questions in your thread since they are relevant to yours.


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RE: Complicated?

  • Posted by kimcoco Zone 5, Wisconsin (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 6, 08 at 14:20

Alina, good luck with your clems. I got started earlier this year, and now I'm up to 20 clems....I just can't seem to stop! LOL My yard is small, but it's going to look fabulous in a few years.

Thanks for your feedback, Karen. I think I'll plant the Minuet in the tree as it's a Viticella and will probably stand up to the sun better, and longer bloom time. Marie will have to go somewhere else.


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RE: Complicated?

Hi Alina, 3'to 4' is rather a small hedge. Your clematis do grow slowly the first couple of years though. Here in the PNW my arborvitae hedge can easily grow 1' a year, where do you live? In 2-3 years they may be able to host your maturing clematis. I wouldn't plant any large type 3's on it(sweet autumn, Polish spirit, Huldine, Comtesse de Bouchard, etc.)as they may overwhelm even a 6' hedge. I would plant your clematis 3'-4' in front of your arborvitaes. As your hedge matures the branches will grow outwards several feet and this will keep your clematis in the open so the rain will get to it. That way you won't have to move them farther out in 5 years time. Is there a lawn in front of the hedge or is it a garden bed? If it is in a garden bed you could just make some inexpensive rebar teepees and grow them up that for 2-3 years until your hedge gets larger to host them. If there is a lawn in front of them it may be rather awkward planting them now.

I don't know if you would need to use the paper tubes. My hedge was old and mature and had a dense, shallow root system that was hard to even get a shovel through. Your trees are young and shouldn't have an extensive root system. I don't think they would compete with the clematis roots much planted 4' away. By the time your hedge is mature your clematis will already be well established. The paper tubes may wick moisture out of the soil if the tubes are several inches above ground level.
Do you have any pictures of your hedge? That would help.

I too went through the obsessive ordering phase. I planted about 40 in 2 years. I unfortunately had to slow down as I ran out of room. I would love to order some of the new varieties, but that means some of the old ones would have to go. I am starting to take out the poorer performers so I have room to start ordering again. Those hybridizers keep tempting us will all these new beauties, it is hard to resist.

Good luck with your clematis Kim and Alina. Karen


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RE: Complicated?

Karen,
Thanks for your explanations and inspirational pictures!
My Thujas are 'Green Giant' (very fast growing cultivar). They can grow 2-3' a year. They take a year o two to establish though. I do not have beds in front of the hedge, just lawn. So you are absolutely right: it would be awkward to plant them now in the middle of the lawn. I will have to find some temporary solution...
My garden is new (we bought our first home last year), but I already have 50+ Clematis. And waiting for 18 more... I agree with you Karen: poor performers will have to go.


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RE: Complicated?

flowerfan...your advice is so on the $. I love reading all your posts!

Would you go a little further & list the oldies that you would get rid of & why? Which ones would you replace them with?


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RE: Complicated?

  • Posted by kimcoco Zone 5, Wisconsin (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 7, 08 at 23:43

That's exactly the question I was going to ask as I was reading Karens's (flowerfan) response!


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RE: Complicated?

Hi Kim and Alina, my list of clematis I would love always keeps getting longer. Omoshiro, Kamila, Cassis, Marjan, Tentel, Tie Dye, Suzy Mac, Harlow Carr and Avante Garde are just a few I would love to somehow cram into my clematis jungle. I am going to redo 2 of my large perennial beds next year, so maybe I can find some room. I am thinking about replacing a few of the clematis I have with some of these new varieties. I have 2 albo luxurians growing in purple plum trees. I don't think the white with the purplish red leaves looks very good. A soft pink like Tentel or Omoshiro would look so much nicer. I can honestly say I do not like the flowers on albo luxurians. I hate all that green crap all over the flowers. It makes the flowers looked deformed in my opinion. It is a great vine otherwise, no diseases, vigourous and long blooming. I will probably move these to the arborvitae hedge in the back of the perennial border. They will be seen from a distance and all you will see is white.

I also have 2 Comtesse de Bouchard that have never bloomed well for me(12 years old). They always produce 15' of foliage and then a handful of flowers at the very top in late summer. I know it does well for other people. Jeanne in Tx says it blooms for her 3 times a year and is a great clematis. Maybe it needs heat to bloom well, I don't know. Maybe I got a bad clone, I don't know, but they are going. There are a few more that I have not bloomed well for me, but are still young, so I will give them another year or 2 to shape up before I decide to replace them. Karen


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RE: Complicated?

Oh no! This year I bought both of the 1's you want to get rid of! The AL is planted in the back of the yard so in case I end up not liking it for the same reasons, at least it will be viewed from a distance. Comtesse isn't planted yet. She was going in a main feature area where than can not happen! I'm not taking the chance for that to happen to me too. Back to the drawing board.


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