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Clematis wilt?

I planted a clematis montana grandiflora in May and it has grown happily all summer long. But a couple of weeks ago it dropped overnight. It hasn’t recovered. Is this wilt? Or is it just giving up for the winter? 

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  • RubytooRubytoo On the sofa, Southerly aspect.Posts: 1,287
    I don't think Montanas are susceptible to wilt. It is usually the "Group 2" clematis.

    Could you either describe what it is planted in, or do another photo, we can't see.
    Pot, ground, rubble, house foundations, paths.
    Do you get squirrels?
    This time of year they dig and bury stuff so any signs of damage at root or ground  broken stems at ground level check for that too.

    We have had a long hot summer is the ground very dry underneath the top layer.
    Just a few things to check and consider. Against a house wall a new young plant may struggle.
    Over watering can also cause plants to wilt.
  • Thanks for replying and apologies for the poor quality photograph. Here’s one of it in early September (when it was happy) and another from today (when it is not). It’s on a north-east facing wall. It shares a little bed with a Gertrude Jekyll climbing rose, a couple of salvia caradonnas, and some creeping phlox that I keep meaning to move elsewhere. In the bed is a reasonable amount of compost and it gets a decent amount of rainfall. 




  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,030
    Highly unlikely to be wilt, Thomas. More likely to be very thirsty - especially sharing a space with a rose.  :)
    That should eventually cover the front of your house - and beyond. Montanas get huge.
    It's possible there's been slug/snail damage to new shoots, as they love nice juicy bits of clematis, but if it isn't damaged down near the base, I think you may need to look at what it's growing in. Compost alone is no use. The location will also be difficult for it to thrive in, because it'll be struggling to access enough water and nutrients.
    Up tight against a wall is difficult at the best of times, unless you can make the growing medium suitable enough. You may need to find a more suitable spot for it - or for the rose. Both of them together in that small space is really tricky.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Thanks! Do you think it is worth persisting with it? My aim is to cover the front of the house with the rose and clematis intertwining. I’d be happy to make an extra effort to keep this bed fed and watered. 
  • MarlorenaMarlorena East AngliaPosts: 7,116
    I would check the lower parts of your plant, as I notice you still have the cane in - I would have removed that long ago - and the plant ties are still in place, and looks as though some strangulation has taken place... those stems need to expand as they age, and one should remove those ties once the plant is attached to trellis...  I can't see quite how tight they are, but one or two look very tight indeed... 
  • Thomas GardenerThomas Gardener Posts: 23
    edited October 2018
    Marlorena said:
    I would check the lower parts of your plant, as I notice you still have the cane in - I would have removed that long ago - and the plant ties are still in place, and looks as though some strangulation has taken place... those stems need to expand as they age, and one should remove those ties once the plant is attached to trellis...  I can't see quite how tight they are, but one or two look very tight indeed... 

    Oops! School boy mistake. I’ve taken all of that out and given the bed a really good water. Fingers crossed... thank you. 
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 11,391
    Yes, keep watering but if the top growth doesn't revive, don't worry too much as it will likely send up new shoots from the base when it is ready.  Those may not appear until next spring or even later if the cause was lack of water but will grow very rapidly once they get started.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,555
    edited October 2018
    Roses and clematis are very hungry, thirsty plants so you need to fee that teeny bed every spring with a generous dollop of slow release fertiliser for roses or tomatoes.  You then need to water it regularly because that bed is too tiny and too full for those plants to get enough water and I would suggest a weekly feed of liquid tomato food to get them going between spring and late June.

    In autumn, after a serious soaking, add a mulch of well-rotted manure and/or garden compost to enrich the soil further over winter and encourage all the helpful micro organisms that help plants get the best from the soil or compost they are in.  Never let the plants go thirsty and in hot weather like we've had this summer you need to water daily.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • As already mentioned Montana clematis are especially fast growing and do need plenty of water and feeding.  I have three Montanas now., every day when I check them I have found new growth. I try to water them every day and feed at least once a week.
  • Thank you all for the advice. It has grown a lot in the last few months and I hope that some daily watering will revive it!
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