Masses of Colour
- Credit: sub
April days herald the beginning of the flowering of the largest of clematis, say experts at Monkton Elm Garden Centre
The summer flowering clematis is rightly one of the most popular climbing plants in British gardens. It can quickly transform walls and fences, providing masses of colour for weeks on end.
Top Plants, a family nursery at nearby North Curry, specialises in clematis and climbing plants, and as it is close by, we can have a regular supply of ‘looking good’ plants, often just coming into flower. Top Plants carries many Raymond Evison cultivars and here we showcase a few of our favourites.
The flowers open to a lovely shade of deep pink with a darker bar and yellow stamens. Perfect for semi shade, and its compact growth means it’s ideal for growing in pots.
Flowering later in the season, its mass of crinkly blue flowers look good growing through climbing roses. Try teaming up with a shrub with yellow foliage.
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Good on a trellis, or grow through shrubs to give the heavy, double flower heads support. A lovely pink, but needs a little shelter to protect the flowers.
A charming red double flower with pink stamens. Perfect for growing through small to medium sized shrubs, like Philadelphus or roses, or again, against a wall or trellis. Seems to flower for a long time through July and August with individual flowers lasting very well.
The most popular large flowered clematis we carry, with good reason because of the sheer quantity and quality of the velvety-red flowers. It can be grown on a pillar or obelisk.
Tips for growing clematis
There is no real mystery to pruning clematis. Summer flowerers should have spindly growth cut back by about a third, to just above a healthy pair of buds in February.
New plants should be pruned back harder at this time to encourage multiple stems which can be trained to supports.
Feed well with a general fertilizer at this time and regularly throughout the growing season, as clematis are hungry plants.