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Can I move a clematis? It is about 3 years old and has small bell like flowers in late August. It is prolific so I don't want to damage it. This year it has not been pruned yet. So if I can move it should I prune it before or after moving. Also, sorry to be greedy, but if i wanted to lay it down for ground cover how should I do it. Or should I leave well alone.



Yes, you can move a clematis, but not right now. Sounds like yours is one that's cut down by mid February, but those varieties aren't particularly great for groundcover, unless you continue to cut them right back every year and then let them rampage again. These viticella types can put on a lot of growth, so unless you've got a large amount of bare ground to cover, and which you don't mind being fully exposed up until, say, June, I wouldn't use it for that. If you don't cut it back, you'll have a good length of bare stems across the ground with all the growth further along.

Cut it by mid February as usual, then move it when the weather's mild - March might be possible, by the look of things this year, otherwise April, but be sure to get as much of the roots out intact as you can.

17 Jan, 2014


Thanks for that Bamboo. I will let you know what I decide, but from what you have said I will probably leave it where it is. Do you know of a good clematis for training as ground cover.

17 Jan, 2014


In a smaller garden, I'd choose a shorter variety if you want one - something like Clematis Petit Faucon or C. Princess Diana (6-8 feet but will need hard pruning in winter). C. 'Pixie' is evergreen and is quite good as ground cover, but needs a lot of sun to flower well; bear in mind most of them will scramble up anything growing nearby if they get a chance. Otherwise, shorter varieties that only need the tips tidying up a bit, such as C. 'The President', though it grows perfectly well with no pruning at all.

17 Jan, 2014

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