Clematis FAQ

James Van Laeken


Should I cut off the seedheads?
Yes, if you want more flowers. No, if you like the decorative aspect of the seedheads.
My clematis has turned brown and is drooping. What should I do?
Clematis are susceptible to many fungi that can cause them to wilt. You also may have unknowingly kinked a young clematis' stems. This can also cause the plant to droop. If it is fungus that caused the wilt, it is a very disappointing malady though it is usually not fatal if you planted correctly in the first place. I would suggest that you carefully cut off all of the diseased parts of the vine and then disinfect your clippers with Physan 20. Dispose of all these diseased parts in a trash bag. Read the article about stem rot on this website.
Can I take a cutting from my friend's clematis?
Yes, you can root clematis cuttings. There are many books on propagation and it would be a good idea for you to borrow one from the library because it is rather lengthy to explain. There are two articles about this subject on this website. Propagation of Clematis by Cuttings and PROPAGATION Here are a couple of tips for propagating clematis from cuttings: take the young shoot in the summer months and dip it into a rooting compound and also place it in a sterilized planting medium.
Why are my leaves turning yellow?
Yellow leaves can be a symptom of overwatering or a mineral deficiency. Clematis need regular watering but is it is important not to let them become waterlogged. Clematis are heavy feeders. The ACS endorses Gro-Power Fertilizer because it is an organic soil conditioner as well as a fertilizer and it contains the necessary minerals to keep clematis healthy.
How do I prune my clematis and when?
There are many factors to consider when you are deciding to prune your clematis so it can not be answered efficiently here. If you are interested in learning about correct pruning techniques in the U.S., our book, Simply Clematis...Clematis Made Simple, has a wonderful chapter dedicated to pruning and it is forthright and simple.