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Clematis Pruning

I planted a Clematis 'Constance' in April to climb up through a mature Ceanothus on a South West facing wall.  The clematis has grown right to the top (about 8') but my dilemma is should I leave all this new green growth to flower next year, or should I cut right back (I believe it is prune code 3) and then remove all the shoots as they die back.  Seems a shame but might produce a stronger and healthier plant in Year 2, when I probably wouldn't need to prune quite so hard?


  • Alina WAlina W Posts: 1,445

    If it's a 3 you should prune fairly hard back, down to about 18", in spring. Clematis are very vigorous, and you won't see most of the flowers if you let them grow. You may also find that the growth dies back to the ground on its own.

  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,099

    As far as I know, Constance is an alpina with deep pinky red flowers and that would make it a group 1 which flowers in spring on old wood and should not be pruned at all except to keep it in bounds and renew vigour.

    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,739

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Thank you all and for the link - most useful.  L

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