Clematis are easy to grow because they are a vigorous climber. Most are fully hardy and tolerant of many soil types and conditions. Clematis are mostly sun loving and flower best with plenty of sun, which means 6 hours plus per day. Plant in good, fertile, organically rich soil for best results. Ideally, even though Clematis should be planted in a sunny spot they grow best if their roots are shaded.
Clematis can be tricky to grow because of the pruning regime. All Clematis in groups 2 & 3 need pruning every year to maintain shape and to keep them flowering. For this reason I have tagged Clematis, an "amber wheel barrow plant" showing medium difficulty to grow. The new foliage is very attractive to slugs, and Clematis need protection. Tips on how best to protect Clematis from slugs. Lastly, Clematis can be subject to a disease called Clematis wilt, by which the leaves turn brown and look unsightly.
On the positive side, Clematis is a lovely climbing plant with a wide range of flower shapes, sizes, colours and flowering times. The Pinterest page and Types of Clematis illustrate the many diverse shapes and sizes of Clematis, with new varieties being introduced every year.
The easiest Clematis to grow, because they need little or no pruning, are Clematis montana, C. alpina and C. macropetala. One of the loveliest varieties, Clematis montana 'Elizabeth' has a beautiful vanilla scent. When planting a Clematis montana you need a large space as many varieties are vigorous, growing up to 15m (nearly 50ft) if left unchecked and growing in ideal conditions. However, there are now varieties of Clematis montana which are less vigorous and manageable in the average sized garden- check out Types of Clematis for more information.
The different varieties of Clematis have a long flowering season, starting early in the year with the C. alpina right through to September the late flowering C. Tangutica, and over winter C. Cirrhosa. Clematis like well-drained soil with sun or light shade. There are some Clematis varieties which are more shade tolerant listed below.
Crocus has over 200 varieties of Clematis to choose from, there is one to suit every garden and gardener.