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Clematis against walls

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I have a south, south east facing wall. Six brick pillars with 6x4 slotted fencing. I have tried to grow clematis against three of the pillars over many years but they always end up weak and straggly or get the dreaded wilt. Any suggestions, I would still like to grow a stunning clematis at the back of the border, but anything with a wow factor will do as I am running out of ideas and patience with the beautiful clematis. Location mid Derbyshire. Thanks for the suggestions, I will try the TJ and the Arebella. I have a wire support down the pillars.



Clematis like their heads in the sun....and their roots in the shade. It may be too hot and dry on your south facing wall, Flowermanx. Maybe you could try mulching over the soil with compost or bark mulch to keep the moisture in, and then cover the base of the clematis with a large stone or piece of rock, to keep the roots cool.
Good luck...your brick pillars sound lovely, and I'm sure you'll get clematis to grow up them with a little TLC ("tender loving care"...) :)

5 Oct, 2009


Trachleospermum jasminoides - there's a particularly wonderful version with variegated leaves, though I've never yet managed to find one. Fragrant, white flowers, semi evergreen - if it's very exposed where you live, might be better to plant it in the spring, though it is hardy.

5 Oct, 2009


I too would go for Trach. J. but it may take a while to reach the size you're after. Why not hedge your bets and plant a Clematis (3-4 " deeper than normal, then try something like a grape vine, Passion flower or one of the Jasmines. One or two of these would give the Clematis something to hold on to.

5 Oct, 2009


Well the clematis wont grow up the pillars without some help from wires or trellis... they need this to wind around. Other than that as said they need a cool shady root run and air around them. We grow ours against the potting shed.

5 Oct, 2009


In my experience Clematis wilt occurs a few times (cut it back) then stops but have no experience if this is true of Trachleospermum jasminoides

5 Oct, 2009


T. jasminoides does not suffer from clematis wilt, Drc

5 Oct, 2009


A clematis you might like to try is 'Arabella'. Mine is growing through a variegated euonymus - it was in flower in June and is still going strong

6 Oct, 2009


One of my favourite climbers is Campsis 'Indian Summer'. It is nowhere near as big as Campsis radicans (the reddish one) ,gets to about 6/7 feet and spreads sideways. It's the most gorgeous apricot colour. It attachs by adventitious roots - like an ivy does.

7 Oct, 2009


It is not shade the roots need, it's water. Especially when it is placed near a wall, where it always is very dry, so give your clematis a lot of water, and you will see it thrive.

24 Oct, 2009


Hi Ingriddk and welcome to GoY sorry to disagree with you but clematis like their roots to be cool, whether you do this by mulching or planting so that the roots are in the shade does not matter. All newly planted plants need water to establish themselves but once established a clematis does not normally need water. |Our are never watered and have no problems, that said if Flowerman lives in the south of England he may need to water occasionally even when established. By the way FM isn't planning to plant along a wall as such but on the brick pillars that support his fencing, so the area wont be as dry as a complete wall. Our C. alpina has seeded itself around and grows in some places I would not expect it to and is way up into our overgrown ash tree.

24 Oct, 2009

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