Clematis forum: Pruning questions on Jackmanii Clematis

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Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
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lauriebasler
Sep 16, 2016 1:25 AM CST
I have a Jackmanii clematis that has been in the dirt for 20 years or so. Back then, this plant was the most expensive plant I had ever bought. I followed planting instructions to the letter, and splurged on amendments. I put it right by the front door. I felt like a real gardener when it grew up it's trellis, as it grew huge and heavily covered with flowers most of the summer.

But then, when it was time to cut it back, I was afraid was the wrong time or that I would cut too low, or too high, and lose the plant. I was too attached to it, so I put it off.

The truth is, this year is the first time this tolerant plant has had a hair cut, ever! Now there is an unruly thick tangle of old canes around 3 feet wide and 1 foot deep, at the front door looking pretty shabby. I can live with it if it's best for the plant, but I could sure use some mentoring. Am I supposed to thin the old canes out. I would like it to be a little more under control.

It cannot be divided, can it? Confused

There are two young canes that are about 2 feet from the main plant. Can this be dug and moved for a new plant? Thumbs down How many vines do you keep when the growing season starts in spring from your Jackmanii? Any tips for this cowardly clematis grower will be more help than I can say. Thanks. There are some beautiful clematis grown here, guys!
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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pirl
Sep 16, 2016 8:18 AM CST
The clematis needs reviving. Wait until February/March and then go to work on it. Cut it back (every stem) to a height of about 12". Apply Epsom Salts (1 tablespoon to a gallon of lukewarm water), add some manure and compost around the base. Any stems that are old can be cut back but may just break off - not a problem at all.
Thumb of 2016-09-16/pirl/f893b8

I've often cut it back in the fall, so if yours is too unruly you can cut it back now and again in February/March.

You could try and divide it but that's not a quick or easy job.

It's worth a try to unearth the two canes you spoke about. You have nothing to lose.

Jackmanii grows so lush and full that I don't count stems left or stems remaining. When a stem shows buds you know it's alive. You can cut other doubtful stems right down to ground level.
Thumb of 2016-09-16/pirl/5ddec1

Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Sep 16, 2016 8:46 AM CST
Thanks, Pirl. I have a jackmanii as well and it is good to hear I've been on the right track re pruning. Laurie, mine is growing at the foot of a lilac so I cut it back in the fall to give the lilac some air and to prevent snow damage in the event we get snow. I also do some pruning to the lilac, even though fall is not the ideal time for that (I am cautious to leave as many next-year buds as possible - just do a general shaping). It is easier for me to see what is going on when both plants are leafless. I've never given the clematis epsom salts - what is that for? Would the lilac benefit from it as well? I also have vinca minor under the lilac and clematis.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 16, 2016 8:52 AM CST
Epsom Salt is magnesium, not salt as we know or use it. It promotes more "basal growth" - more stems. I've never heard of it harming any plants. It's highly recommended for tomatoes, peppers, etc.
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
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Calif_Sue
Sep 18, 2016 11:23 PM CST

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For roses too! Thumbs up
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Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 19, 2016 8:33 AM CST
Right!
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
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lauriebasler
Sep 20, 2016 10:03 PM CST
Thank you, Arlene! @pirl. I did cut it back, as you said, and moved the little stems to a place where the roots get shade and the plant will see some sun. . My porch looks so tidy. Thank you for the dose of courage. I have marked the calendar for Feb, 2017 to amend and check out what canes are dead. Do you have many clematis. A favorite, or several favorites???
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 21, 2016 7:55 AM CST
You're quite welcome. It does take an act of courage to attack the job, but I'm glad you did it. When Feb. 2017 arrives don't even waste time trying to determine dead or living canes. Generally the dead canes just aren't an issue. They simply fall over so just cut above living buds, by an inch or so.

My favorite clematis is Omoshiro.

Clematis (Clematis 'Omoshiro')
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Sep 21, 2016 9:47 AM CST
Oh my, this is a beauty!
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
Image
lauriebasler
Sep 22, 2016 12:38 AM CST
Never saw this before but it is certainly the prettiest clematis. I love love it. Wow. so so nice.
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 22, 2016 8:29 AM CST
I guess that's the reason I have 1,138 photos of it!

Thanks.
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
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lauriebasler
Sep 23, 2016 1:02 AM CST
I was able to dig up a couple of rooted plants of my clematis, and plant elsewhere. Really looking forward to seeing if they survive next spring!
Thank you Arlene, @pirl I will sure be thinking of you if it does. Very helpful advice.
[Last edited by lauriebasler - Sep 23, 2016 1:03 AM (+)]
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Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 23, 2016 7:22 AM CST
Happy to help.

Placing something like a large stone, or piece of slate, on the earth above the root zone will help keep the moisture in the soil and will keep the root zone cool.
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
Image
lauriebasler
Sep 24, 2016 6:42 PM CST
I have the wonderful large flat stone, that my father in law used in his garden for years. When I go out for my walk tonight I will place it on the clematis. Thanks alot.
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Sep 24, 2016 7:39 PM CST
Ideal!

You're welcome.

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