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Hi, we bought two small Clematis from a supermarket last Spring...about two feet high and only a couple of quid each.....there has been virtually no growth and no flowers on either, and I have read that I should have heavily manured the planting hole and mulched which I didnt really do. I also have few plants round them to offer shade to their "feet"......I haven't pruned at all due to their not being much to prune!...Should I replant, or make a couple of adjustments and be more patient?????? Thanks folks


A good thing to do would be to shave a bit of the stem about half way up the plant, if its green then the plant is healthy and just giving it a good mulch at the base of the plant will help tremendously. Clematis love being Hot at the Top and Shaded/Damp underneath.

Sprinkling a good dose of bonemeal around the base will help a lot also.

Gardening Grandma

If they are alive, they were probably making root rather than putting on growth last year and should do better this year. Do you know what clematis they are? You need to work out which group they belong to in order to know how to prune them. If you don't know, did they flower before or after June?


I saw Monty in a video say that they should be pruned right back once planted. Also that you should plant them deeper than the origional planting level.

My container clamatis, named 'Aldi' (due to lost label), is slow growing but  thriving on bonemeal - this used because I didn't mulch the pot and not pruned yet . Twined around a wigwam of sticks it appears to be about a metre in length - I have great hopes for it.


Gardening Grandma

There are two other threads on clematis at the moment and they contain good information. If these are large-flowered hybrids, they need to be pruned back to around 6-12 inches and then pruned back again to about 12" when they get to around 18", so you get plenty of stems. This is more important than flowers this year, although you should still get flowers, just a bit later.

Thanks, it seems drastic - but can see the logic in getting the stems. Should get a flower this year so will know which type for sure. 

I read you should maybe cut them back for the first few (2-3?) years until you have perhaps 4 good, strong stems.

just chop one of the stems half way if it green good if brown chuck it int bin.

Gardening Grandma

No guarantees, of course, but clematis are tough and it is quite likely to have survived. You can't take lack of growth as a sign that it is sick, because many clematis don't make much growth in the first year. At that stage, good roots are the priority. obviously, cheap clematis are very young ones, but there's no reason they shouldn't do well.


They do need to be planted a lot deeper than when you buy them - maybe 3ins deeper some say more. Mine are all in their first year and look very sorry for themselves but are OK. The first year of pruning is hard to know what to do but most things I have read say cut back to 30cm for all types for the first year, feed (they are hungry plants) 

Blood, fish and bone is good or Growmore is easier if you are not sure and mulch with compost. When they are in full growth give them tomato feed every couple of weeks. After this year, depnding on varirty will depend how you prune.

As you maybe didn't plant them deep then pile the mulch up high around the stem

Incidently mine are £2 ones as well


Thanks everyone...I'll check the stem and if OK I'll feed and give a good mulch.  Grade 2 for pruning I'm sure so will check that too..thanks again

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