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Propagating clematis

Posted by AngieIN 05 IN (My Page) on
Thu, Aug 4, 05 at 22:04

How do you propagate clematis? I've tried cuttings, burying a portion into the ground holding it down with pins with no success. The only thing I haven't tried is propagating in water. What do you recommend? Thanks for your help.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Propagating clematis

This year I took off-shoots and buried it... A technique known as layering... unfortunately layering shoots of clematis really takes all summer... also it seems to help if you damage the shoot a little (the part your covering) and before covering treat the bruising with a fungicide. I find layering a whole summer venture. I wouldn't move them until they go dormant in the fall.

Cuttings are also possible but I've had really poor success with clematis cuttings compared to layering... Wait another 2 weeks and try taking cuttings from semi-ripe wood as it will need less humidity to root.

Or if you want to do it now take Leaf-bud cuttings from from the softwood (this years growth)... Look for the buds at the leaf axils try and find big strong buds. If you cut the leaves in half it will require less misting...

One big tip with the cuttings... make yourself a pot of chamomile tea once a week. Have a mug to drink and then pour the rest in a spray bottle and mist the cuttings with it. I use to have all sorts of problems with cuttings until I started doing this... This also helps seedlings too. It really works.

- Andrew

RE: Propagating clematis

Actually Angie, I have had pretty good success with cuttings. Layering works well with type 1 clems I hear. Here is the method I use:

Take a cutting with 2 or 3 nodes from a hardened stem of this season's growth. Cut off bottom leaves leaving short stubs and cut off about half the top leaves. wound side of cutting (scrape sides near bottom node but dont hurt the buds at the leaf joint)and dampen. dip in rooting hormone and shake off. pot in rooting mix and water, then cover with cut off soda bottle( cut off the bottom and remove cap, use this as a dome).

About 2-3 months later, roots should be visable in holes of pot. I've had about 60-70% success this way. With a misting system, you should do a bit better.


RE: Propagating clematis

I'm working on a clematis, too. My cuttings have all just rotted. Has anyone tried it from the seeds? If so, what's the best way to do this?

RE: Propagating clematis

I found seed too slow for my liking. Layering takes a while but you pretty well have a flowering plant the next year. I'm zone 3 so things can be a bit slow when it comes down to perennial seed propagation.

You can also propagate clematis cuttings in wet florists foam. I've got some cuttings started today along with Monarda, Phlox, Lamium and Geranium. I've had greater (but not excellent) success with clematis in florist foam instead of peat / sand mixes.


RE: Propagating clematis

Clematis will root anywhere on the stem/vine, so I make my cuttings with one set of leaves (with buds in the axils). Leave about 1 1/2 inches of stem below a set of leaves and stick it so that the leaf axils are barely above potting medium. There is less to keep alive while it roots. Humidity chamber or mist.

RE: Propagating clematis

I'm going to give all the above a try. I especially like the chamomile tea one, ha, ha. I tried layering, but I forgot I had done this and I think I pulled the plant. Now, I make sticky notes and put them on my calendar to remind me. Thank you.

RE: Propagating clematis


I have a separate calendar for gardening... I particularly like righting down how long it takes to root different cuttings so I know next spring what to expect.

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