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Can I hard prune my clematis

Hello, Just after some advice.  I have a clematis growing well in my garden (its in flower now) and its growming amoungst a wild honey suckle and unfortuantely loads of brambles.

I think the only way I can tackle this area is to prune everything down to the ground, dig out as much of the bramble as possible and then let it grow back next year.  Will the clematis survive this hard pruning or will this kill it off?

Any other suggestions would be welcome.


  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923

    I would wait until the clematis has flowered, then you can cut it back to 6 inches off the ground, you probably wont get a good show next year as it'll be focused on growing back but I'll be good in a couple of years. same for the honeysuckle.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,960

    Hi Doogie - I'm assuming the plants are all well establised? I'd be tempted to prune the clem back a bit, try and dig it out and put it in a pot temporarily, although I'd wait till it's finished flowering. Give it a good watering and some food and keep it tucked away in  a sheltered spot to give it a chance to recover properly. You can then hack the honeysuckle as much as you want to get access to all the brambles, without fear of damaging the clematis, which you can replant once you've finished your 'slash and burn' project!  You'll lose flowers obviously, but the honeysuckle will respond well to a haircut. Give it a generous watering and a mulch etc to keep it happy. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,960

    Snap treehugger! image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Doogie72Doogie72 Posts: 62

    Thanks for the advice guys.  I think I'll try to cut it down fairly low - then see if I can move dig the clematis out into a pot as Fairygirl suggests.  I think that's the only way I'll get rid of the brambles. 

    I've got an awful lot of work to get on with this Autumn I think - with this area with the clematis and several other mature shurbs that I want to move I think I'll develop new muscles before Christmas!.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,960

    Cheaper than a gym Doogie image

    Make sure you water the clematis thoroughly before you intend digging it out. It'll thank you for it.

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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