crunchy gardener
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:21 pm
Location: Cambridge Wisconsin

Pruning Clematis

winter clematisa.jpg
We were so lucky to move into a house with very established clematis. There are 2 of them. This picture is of the same one (one today and one from last summer). The scond one is of equal size. It used to be so huge and beautiful. Last summer some of the brown didn't turn green and flower like summers past. It still is beautiful...but needs some love and I just don't know what sort of love to give. I am an organic gardener, and I live in South Central Wisconsin. I think they just need to be pruned very badly. I have been told you never cut the brown stuff that is always blooms. Until this past summer that had been true. I saw on a gardening show once you cut them almost to the ground. So I have no idea what is true and not.
I guess my question is do you prune clematis? If so how much do you cut off and when?
Thank you!

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Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3567
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

Re: Pruning Clematis

Some clematis bloom on old wood and others only bloom on new growth. If you hard prune the first type, most of the early bloom will be lost for that season. The latter type ban be prune,d to within 6-8 inches of the ground. Some times I hard prune and other times do a moch lighter pruning to six feet or so. The plants have always responded well to either approach. I have usually pruned in mid winter.

Green Thumb
Posts: 532
Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2014 2:56 pm
Location: Southwest Louisiana

Re: Pruning Clematis

Actually there are 3 types of clematis and they all have different pruning requirements. You need to find out what kind it is and type, and get your pruning requirements for that particular vine. Mine is a type II-I prune mine in late Jan. (of course -I;m in zone 9), and I can usually see the buds starting to make. Some need to be pruned all the way to the ground-mine is just lightly pruned to remove dead growth, and shape up some.

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