What kind of soil does clematis like?
The choice of soil for planting clematis is of primary importance, since this culture is quite capricious in nature when it comes to the composition of the soil. A competent approach to solving this issue in the future will save the gardener from most of the problems associated with the cultivation of flowering vines. This article will focus on the rules for choosing the soil for planting clematis, fertilizing it, as well as how to care for these demanding plants.
How to choose the right soil for planting clematis
The optimal solution to the problem of planting clematis will be to place it not in open ground, but in a container - a container or a large pot. Thus, during the year, depending on weather conditions, it will be possible to take the plant outside, or leave it indoors. The convenience of this method of growing clematis has a number of nuances that must be taken into account. So, the container for growing clematis should be quite voluminous - at least 20 liters. You should also take care of the vertical support for clematis, since it belongs to vines and can rise up to a height of 2 m. Clematis grown in a pot will need regular feeding and frequent watering. In addition, it will have to be replanted every 3 or 4 years.
Regardless of whether clematis is grown in a pot or in a garden on the ground, you need to take care of a suitable soil composition for it. This vine makes quite a lot of demands on the landing site.
The most important ones are listed below:
1) Clematis prefer alkaline or neutral loamy soils. The soil should be loose, breathable, and sufficiently nutritious.
2) Advance preparation for planting clematis will be required, which should be started at least a year before the planned procedure. It is important that during this period the land in the area allocated for the vines had time to settle, and the substances introduced into it were evenly distributed, making the soil neutral.
3) Supports for vines are also installed ahead of time. The height of the supporting structures should be about 200-250 cm. A strong material should be chosen so that the supports can withstand strong winds, otherwise they may fall, causing damage to the plants clinging to them. Supporting building walls or fences seems like a good idea to save budget and space. However, this is not recommended as the land near massive structures is usually too dry and barren. Clematis planted on it will not take root well and may die. In order to create the effect of a green cover over the walls of the house, you should place clematis supports at a short distance from them - 30 cm is enough. In this case, the rainwater flowing from the walls will not flood the clematis plantings.
4) In the summer, there is a danger of overheating of the root system of clematis, which is grown in the open field. This can be avoided by mulching the surface of the earth on a site with vines, which is recommended after planting, as well as in combination with plant care procedures. It does not hurt to create a slight shade for the roots of clematis by planting other plants. Marigolds would be an ideal choice - these flowers not only create shading and look beautiful, but also protect their neighbors from being hit by a pest such as a nematode.
5) The relief of the site can also significantly affect the development of clematis. It is best to give preference to flat surfaces. If the site is located on a hill, the growing season of clematis can be significantly reduced. Lowlands are also undesirable for flowering vines, since they are characterized by the accumulation of cold air. As a result, thermophilic clematis can freeze, which will adversely affect their growth and development.
The composition of the potting soil
Having chosen a suitable place for growing clematis, you should prepare planting holes for seedlings. The average diameter of the hole should be about 0.6 m, and its depth should be at least 0.7 m. In order to avoid stagnation of moisture, which is detrimental to flowering vines, drainage of the planting hole will be required. Broken brick, pebbles, expanded clay are suitable for this. To ensure quick adaptation of seedlings to a new place, a nutrient mixture must be placed in the holes, which you can prepare yourself. It should include the following components: equal shares of garden soil, peat and humus. It is also recommended to add sand to the mixture to make it lighter and looser. It doesn't hurt to add a little superphosphate. Depending on the characteristics of the soil on the site, other components can be added to meet the needs of clematis. For example, loamy soils can be fertilized with compost, and sandy soils can be made more nutritious with chernozem. The hardest thing to prepare acidic soilsbecause he doesn't like them. Before adding the nutrient mixture to the wells, you need to treat the area with a lime solution at the rate of about 0.2 kg per 1 sq. M.
Contraindications when choosing a soil for clematis
When choosing a site for growing clematis, soils with the following characteristics should be avoided:
1) An absolute contraindication is acidic soils, as well as too salty. Heavy and excessively moist soil is also not suitable for growing clematis.
2) The close location of groundwater to the surface of the earth on the site makes it unsuitable for growing flowering vines. If there is no other way to plant clematis, you can place the seedlings in portable containers with a suitable soil composition and place them on the site. Another way to get out of this situation is to plant clematis bushes on specially poured hills about a meter high.
3) For the safe cultivation of clematis, only soils are suitable, whose acidity level fluctuates between 5.5 pH and 6.5 pH. Other indicators mean that the soil does not meet the requirements of the crop.
Secrets of successful cultivation of clematis
The problem-free cultivation of clematis depends not only on the correct choice of soil, but also on certain agrotechnical procedures. Compliance with the recommendations will allow clematis to live up to 25 years, delighting its owner with abundant and lush flowering. Here are some of the secrets to getting good results when caring for this crop:
1) Experienced gardeners know that adult clematis do not tolerate transplantation very well, so it is better to decide in advance where exactly the vines will be located on the site.
2) The moment of acquiring planting material also plays an important role, since the speed of adaptation of seedlings to a new place directly depends on their health. It is not recommended to buy small bushes for planting, whose height does not exceed 10 cm - they do not take root well and most often die. If such a frail sapling succeeds in leaving, in the future it will still lag behind in its development from other clematis and will require a lot of attention and care. It is better to give preference to taller seedlings with a height of about 20 cm, which have already formed 5 or 6 root shoots of yellow color. Also a good sign is the presence of a couple of shoots with leaves and buds.As a rule, clematis at the age of 2 or 3 years are suitable for planting.
3) You can plant clematis seedlings in the ground in spring and autumn. However, bushes planted in spring will have more time to adapt to a new location. Before the arrival of the winter cold, they will have time to get stronger, grow up and are more likely to survive the winter.
4) It is better to take care in advance of sheltering clematis from the wind, therefore, separate corners of the garden, protected from drafts, are suitable for growing them. The seedlings may require a more solid shelter, which can be constructed with nonwoven fabrics. It is also worth providing young clematis with a little shading. At the end of autumn, clematis should be insulated and covered to protect them from severe frosts.
5) During the first 2 years after planting in the ground, clematis spend a lot of energy on the growth and development of the root system. For this reason, nutrients are distributed in favor of the roots, and the aerial parts of the plant do not have as much nutrition. Because of this, the stems and foliage of clematis during this period do not differ in strength and density. Inexperienced gardeners often decide that the reason lies in the poor composition of the soil and transplant the plants to a new place, causing them stress, from which the process of vines development slows down even more. Therefore, if in the first 2 years clematis did not acquire lush foliage, you should not rush to transplant - the plant grows roots in the first place.
6) Young clematis need careful care, which involves regular weeding. Weed grasses take nourishment from seedlings, so they need to be disposed of in a timely manner. The weeding procedure should be carried out extremely carefully - young roots are easily torn from careless actions. Supports are also necessary for the normal growth and development of flowering vines. In the first years of life, clematis should be covered with non-woven material on rainy, windy or too hot days. The ideal solution would be to create a miniature greenhouse for small clematis, which is very easy to make from an ordinary large-volume plastic container (5 liters). The bottom of the container must be cut off, and then you can cover the seedling with the resulting "cap". The lid of the container must be regularly opened to ventilate the greenhouse.
7) In the first 2 years of life, clematis do not need pruning. Moreover, this procedure can harm them, since young plants are not yet sufficiently strong and may not withstand the stress associated with it. Pruning is especially dangerous for bushes planted in the second half of summer or autumn. During this period, caring for young plants is reduced to regular watering, top dressing, protection from adverse environmental conditions and harmful insects.
8) Drainage work should not be neglected, since stagnation of moisture in the soil is extremely dangerous for clematis. Broken brick, crushed stone, coarse sand are suitable as drainage. The thickness of the drainage layer must be at least 15 cm.
9) In spring, it is recommended to feed clematis, as well as to carry out preventive treatment for diseases. For these purposes, a solution prepared according to the following recipe is suitable: pour crushed chalk or dolomite flour (1 glass) into a container with 5 liters of water, stir until completely dissolved, then add a product containing copper.
10) The introduction of ash as a fertilizer has a beneficial effect on the flowering of clematis - it becomes more luxuriant. In addition, ash treatment protects the root system of clematis from rotting, and also repels pests.
Due to the rather capricious nature of clematis, caring for this plant cannot be called simple. The gardener must not only take care of choosing a suitable place for planting flowering creepers, but also provide it with proper care. However, the spectacular appearance of clematis and its life expectancy compensate for the effort expended.With the help of these lush blooming vines, you can decorate even the smallest area.