Are these climbers dead?

janer2janer2 Posts: 53

Apparently the first two are clematis and the third is a boston ivy, according to the people we bought this house from. Last spring just as we moved in, I had a baby, and consequently the garden got a bit neglected and none of these were watered all summer. Are they now dead? Timagehere does seem to be green wood in the stems.imageimage



  • B3B3 Posts: 5,647

    If you scratch the stems with your fingernail and it's green underneath, they're not dead. Some clematis look like that in the winter and some have shoots coming from the soil in the spring.

    Last edited: 05 March 2017 08:13:59

    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53

    Thank you. Sorry the photos didnt all post with the first post. The last picture here is of theimageimage boston ivy - should it not have leaves on it year round?

  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53

    Sorry - having photo issues. This should be the boston ivy.image

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 20,266

    No - Boston ivy's deciduous. It's also quite hard to kill  image

    The first clematis is possibly a montana, which looks dead at this time of year until you get the little shoots appearing at the leaf joints. A well established one will be absolutely fine, so don't worry too much. You should see some growth soon.

    Check the other one by scratching a little of the 'dead' looking woody part. As has been said, if there's a bit of green there, it'll be fine. Water is essential for good clematis growth, so if you're in  a dryish area, or the clematis is in a dry part of the garden, just make sure it's watered in long dry spells, and add a mulch afterwards to keep it happy.

    In any case, if you don't know what varieties they are, wait till they flower and post some pix, and you'll get a bit of help with the ID. That will help with the pruning regime and any maintenance in future.  

    I'm wondering why the Boston Ivy has a trellis - it's self clinging, so no need for any. image

    to walk through a forest is to touch the past

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 24,523

    neither of those photos of Boston Ivy,  are Boston Ivy.

  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53

    Right! Sunday morning detective work is underway. Thanks so much for the help. The clematis both appear to be alive. I'm going to find the thread about clematis and give the poor neglected things some nourishment. Any tips on what to use for mulch? Manure? Bark chip? Some kind of mixture? image

    The boston ivy however doesn't appear to be alive. Most of the distal stems are crunchy brown with no green and look very dead to me. However some of the proximal bits look possibly ok - there's a green bit with a less green core.

    Trying to attach some photos of all 3 plants.

  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53


  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53


  • janer2janer2 Posts: 53

    Thanks, the third one is a boston ivy - I've checked photos of the house when we bought it and that's definitely what it is. Not sure about the trellis - possibly to avoid it destroying the brickwork? The photos didn't post the way I intended, will go back and edit to avoid confusion.

    Last edited: 05 March 2017 08:46:07

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