Large-Flowered Clematis

Large-Flowered Clematis

by Garden News |

If you’re looking for floral ‘razzle dazzle’, the late spring, large-flowered clematis varieties have it in spades. These versatile climbers not only get summer started by flowering from May, they also have a later, albeit lighter, season of bloom in September.

They’re adaptable, growing in sun, as well as shade. Paler and white varieties do better in subdued light as it stops the colour fading. Many double-flowered varieties produce single blooms in late summer, rather than the fuller heads of flower in spring. Most reach around 1.8m (6ft) or more, making them ideal for growing against fences or growing in containers.

Once established the only pruning they need is a light trim in late winter, cutting back growth to 60-90cm (2- 3ft) to newly emerging buds, which will then produce flowering shoots. As clematis secure themselves by twining leaf stalks they need a supporting framework such as trellis attached to fence panels or a mesh obelisk if growing in pots.

They need a moist, but well-drained soil and build up vigour and perform more productively after they've established in a year or two. They also benefit from a feed from a high potash fertiliser in spring and a mulch of organic matter to help keep roots moist and cool in summer.

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