Autumn pruning of clematis is of particular importance, because the beauty and health of perennial vines depends more on proper haircut. The type of pruning directly depends on the group belonging of clematis, each of them has its own differences and characteristics. How to properly cut clematis and prepare it for wintering, read our article.
Timing of pruning clematis
Clematis pruning is carried out in spring and autumn, each event has its own goals and characteristics. In many varieties, flower buds are set in the fall, so this is the most optimal time for pruning. Clematis are pruned from October to mid-November, the procedure must be completed before the onset of cold weather.
Pruning in the first year of planting
Autumn formative pruning is shown to all types of clematis, but there are also nuances here. If we talk about this procedure after planting, then trimming is categorically contraindicated. Another thing is if the seedlings are planted in spring, then in the fall you can shorten the shoots to 30 cm, this will stimulate the plant to tillering. In subsequent years, pruning is carried out according to the group belonging of each species.
Group cropping features
Clematis are divided into three large groups, respectively, and each group is pruned in a different way.
- Clematis, blooming in early spring on the shoots of last year, belong to group A, therefore they do not need a cardinal haircut. In autumn, branches are cut 20 cm from the crown and diseased, damaged and old shoots are removed. Representatives of this group: princes, Tangut, mountain clematis.
- The second group B. It includes clematis blooming twice a season – in spring and summer. The first wave of flowering occurs on last year’s shoots, the second on current ones. This group is also cropped twice. The first time, the faded shoots are cut by about a third. The second time (in the fall), the shoots are shortened by half. The most common members of the group are Lanuginoza varieties, some Patens, Florida and woolly clematis.
- The third group C, the most common and unpretentious. Includes clematis blooming on the shoots of the current year (from July to September). In the fall, they are cut off completely, leaving only 10-15 cm above the ground. This includes such varieties as Zhakman, Vititsela, Tangutika, variegated and eastern clematis.
Clematis well tolerate all types of pruning (formative, sanitary, anti-aging). Once every 3 years, the clematis bushes of the first group are thinned out. Clematis of the second group rejuvenate every 5 years, cutting off the branches almost to the ground.
Autumn care and shelter of clematis
Pruning isn’t the only thing to do in the fall. In order for the vines to winter comfortably, you need to take care of seasonal care and preparation for winter.
- Watering. If the autumn is rainy, then clematis will have enough natural moisture. In dry weather, 2 buckets of water are poured under each bush, every 2 weeks.
- Top dressing. In late September – early October, add half a tablespoon of potassium sulfate or superphosphate under each bush. The soil around the vine can be powdered with wood ash.
- Plants are processed when there are signs of a disease. After leaf fall, spray the shoots and root zone with Bordeaux liquid.
Shelter, like pruning, occurs in groups. Clematis is not so afraid of frost as changes in temperature, wind and icing, so you need to take timely care of their protection.
Group A clematis are the most frost-resistant, withstand temperatures down to -40 degrees and it is not necessary to cover them. In the event of a severe winter with little snow, shoots can be removed from the trellis and covered with compost.
Shelter is required for clematis of the second group B. Lianas are removed from the supports and laid on dry ground, covering them with agrofibre, fallen leaves or compost.
Group C clematis also do not need shelter (due to the peculiarities of pruning), but it will not be superfluous to mulch the near-trunk circle with peat, rotted compost silt with a mixture of earth and sawdust.
Now you know how to properly prune clematis. Bring the knowledge gained to life, cut clematis according to group affiliation, take care and next year the plants will surprise you with their beauty. And do not forget that right now, during the autumn plant care procedures, you can order and plant a new variety, which will become a worthy addition to your garden ensemble. You will find a wide range of clematis on our website. Order, plant, grow and enjoy their beauty!
Article author: Oksana Artemenko