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I have just bought two clematis plants: alpina helsingborg, and integrifolia Alonushka, which I want to grow side by side up an existing trellis by the patio. A bed has been made in front of the trellis, but there's only a bare spade's depth of soil before I hit hardcore. Is this enough? What do you think?
Plenty butmake sure you put in plenty of compost, leaf mould and water well.
I think it is pushing it a bit, but both of those are fairly small so may well be OK. Give them plenty of shade at thr roots and plenty of organic material to toot into. Don't forget they are greedy plants and need plenty of feeding. Don't forget Allonushka does not get very tall, so might struggle covering alot of space, but of course you may not have alot of space to cover. Both lovely, enjoy.
yeah, but I agree with Matty2. I'd also suggest a good mulch of something - clem likes its feet cool and as ts roots are likely to stay shallow it'll need it all the more. Pop some little stones or something over the soil around the roots and it should be fine. You can always lay the rootball over if you're struggling for depth from the get-go. As long as its got a shoot above soil level it'll know which way is up!
Thanks to all of you, I am very reassured by your suggestions! I do only have a small area of trellis to cover, so I thought these two together would be ideal and will give me a succession of flowers from April to September!
...Alionushka is a funny one.. lovely when in flower but it is herbaceous and does not cling. It will shoot up and demand support right to the top otherwise all the stems will eventually, and seemingly overnight, flop over at the top and cascade downwards, which can be nice in itself... but best grown up the middle of a tall obelisk I think.. at least 8 foot...
I would mulch it to get the extra depth which will help deter clematis wilt, or at least help you to recover the plant should it wilt.
What kind of mulch Ww? I'm not very savvy about mulches!
I tythink 12" is pushing it for healthy clematis but you can always raise the soil by putting bricks or planks around it to a depth of 6" which would help keep their roots cool anbd give them extra root depth and access to nutrients and water. You'll have to top dress generously every spring with clematis fertiliser to ensure good flowering.
As said above, Alyonushka is not self clinging so needs tying in.