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Growing clematis through bamboo

I want to grow some clematis (one summer one winter flowering) through some bamboo I've planted for screening. 

This is for two reasons. Firstly to try and increase the screening ability by adding more foliage, and the second is to keep it interesting throughout the year.

Also (OK, three reasons!) we have a small garden and not enough room to do everything I want to do and there's nowhere else to put any clematis!

Generally speaking would growing clematis through bamboo work, as it would scrambling through trees or a rose?


  • IamweedyIamweedy Posts: 1,364

    I would be worried that as the bamboo has a largely vertical  growth habit the bamboo would overwhelm any clematis.  Most  clematis would need horizontal support as well as vertical to look at its best.

    Someone else will know more about this.

    'You must have some bread with it me duck!'

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,350

    my bamboo is very bendy, I think a clematis would weigh it down too far.

    Maybe not all bamboos are as bendy as mine.

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,350

    we agree iamweedyimage

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,838

    We have inherited very strong, tall bamboo in this garden and I don't think it would do as a clematis support either as it would also interfere with the clematis' needs to get its roots down deep and would compete too much for food and water that the clematis needs to grow and flower well..

    Not keen on bamboo anyway so my vote is for ditching the bamboo, erecting some trellis as a screen and covering that with clematis.

    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • From personal experience, be very careful with the bamboo.

  • EdamEdam Posts: 8

    Thanks for the replies guys.

    Bamboo is in a pot to contain the roots. I had planned to grow the clematis from outside the pot (avoiding root competition) and grow through the bamboo that way but general consensus seems to be that won't work?

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 8,724

    The clematis would probably be OK given the way you plan to grow them.  My concern would be that the clematis stems could break a lot with the movement of the bamboo.

  • The bamboo should support it but if not just cut some canes, dry them and use them. It's not like they'll stand out!

    My concern is that established bamboo roots are very dense and the clematis is unlikely to be able to make a living amongst that.  Perhaps if you get it planted whilst the bamboo is young it might be able to get underneath the bamboo root which tends to move sideways rather than especially deep.

    Good luck with the bamboo, I hope it doesn't destroy you!

  • I have a large bamboo in my garden, with a clematis Montana weaving its way through it, quite happily -- in fact, too rampantly! As long as the bamboo is not too young/small/spindly, there should be no problem -- but I advise you to avoid the vigorous clematis varieties.

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