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We are putting up a (free-standing) trellis approx. 1.8m high by 2m wide and want to grow clematis. I haven't grown them before so I wonder how many plants maximum could I plant up, i.e. what kind of distance between the plants? Was hoping to plant 3, one of each group, possible 4, or would that be squeezing it?
No, I don't think so. I have clematis planted on two obelisks, about four on each one. They are less than a foot apart, and give a lovely show in the summer.
drawback I can see with planting one of each group, they'll twine together and be a right B..... at pruning times.
Oooohhhh... I hadn't thought of that, nutcutlet. I wonder would the solution be to buy maybe 3 narrower trellises and separate them slightly so the clematis don't tangle?
Thanks gardengirl, now there's an idea... obelisks...
It also depends what variety they are. Clematis montana (an early one) can grow very big. So can clematis armandii.
Yes I was going to get a montana for the Group 1 but maybe I should re-think that option?
I often plant two group 2s or group 3s together on trellis or obelsiks to get a contrast of colour and flower shape and it works well. Putting two different pruning groups together would be a pruning nightmare.
For plants to cover just one panel would have to be something like Pagoda - http://www.clematis.hull.ac.uk/new-clemdetail.cfm?dbkey=529 and Romantika - http://www.clematis.hull.ac.uk/new-clemdetail.cfm?dbkey=396 but if those don't float your boat, you could use the same website to do further searches for clems that only get too between 2 and 2.5 metres and are both in pruning group 2 or 3.
Whatever you choose, you need to keep on top of training in the new growth to get a maximum horizontal spread across your trellis.
Montana will get to 7 to 10 metres so needs more scope to grow.
Have fun whichever you choose.
Like Nut and Obelixx I keep my group2's and group3's on separate structures - it is easy to just cut the group 3's right back in spring if there is nothing else on the trellis. They also suggest getting some flat tiles to put round the stem of the plants when you have planted them - it keeps the roots shady, whilst the rest of the plant is in the sun.
Look forward to seeing phots of the results - clematis are one of my favourites ! Good luck
Thanks chicky, and thanks to obelixx that's very helpful, yes I will definitely stick to keeping the pruning groups separate. Can't wait to get stuck in soon - I feel like a kid in a candy shop, there's so much choice!