Clems on discount.

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

All my new clem's that I bought for $3.50 are doing great. New shoots and blooms starting to pop open. My question is that, should I cut them back this fall since they are new to the ground and let them build up stronger roots? I am not sure what class they are.

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

Ok, so maybe I made the wrong caption to put up.
Should I cut them back this year?

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

What are the names of the clematises?

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

One of them I know is, Ville de lyon, The others I dont know off the top of my head, I will have to find the labels if I didnt throw them away. One is white and the others are purple and white, almost like a nelly mosser.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

There are three groups of clematises and they should be pruned according to the group they're in. Here's a link to Fine Gardening's article on pruning clematis:

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

The names are, Fireworks, Carnaby, and Miss Bateman.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

All three are in Class/Group 2, per the attached Fine Gardening list:

Here are the instructions for pruning the Group 2 clematises:


However...many of us treat them as Group 3 (like Jackmanii) and prune them to a pair of buds about a foot from the ground and get beautiful flowering. That would be hard pruning in late winter to early spring and feed with either rose or tomato fertilizer. Remember when pruning to leave a pair of buds so the vines can grow from them.

After you prune them and feed them you might want to add mulch in the form of compost to provide a constant level of moisture that will help the clematis to grow (the soil won't dry out as fast as without the compost or mulch).

If you want to go strictly by the book you can prune your Group 2 plants back to a strong pair of buds and clear out any dead wood you find but try not to break or bend any good stems.

Any questions?

Here's a photo of the buds and you'll find them about 10 to 12" from the ground.

This message was edited Sep 12, 2010 7:45 PM

Thumbnail by pirl
Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

Thanks. That is a lot of help. I trim the ones I have had for a while I trim in the spring, but was nor sure about these. I am surprised that they are putting out blooms now. I guess they like their new homes, I

Mount Bethel, PA(Zone 6a)

More good info!! Thanks Pirl. Teri

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

You're welcome!

I'll amend my post above so it won't say to prune "to the ground" and will say to prune to a pair of buds about a foot from the ground or people may actually not see the part about the buds and then the plant would have to start anew with brand new stems. For all the beauty clematises give us we should make the transition as easy as possible.

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

I normally go out in the fall,early winter, and take down all the old dry vines to about 8 inches above the ground, is that good, or should I leave the old vines all winter till spring and then prune?
Or should I wait till I see buds in the spring and then prune down to them.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I've removed old vines in November and December simply because I hated pulling into the driveway and looking at the Jackmanii that looked dead for months at a time. I was curious if they'd bloom normally and they did. I will no longer be timid about removing the old growth anytime during winter.

Just make sure you leave a strong pair of buds as you see in my photo above.

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