31 July 2013

July 2013 meeting.

The meeting this month was all about Clematis, and  Pauline and Gerald, of Priorswood Clematis Nursery, were there to educate us about them. They had bought along a lot of plants to show us also to sell, it made a very colourful display.
Pauline with the plants.
They gave us a lot of hints and tips for planting and pruning  them. Soil preparation is very important as they are going to be in that same position for many years if they are started off correctly and cared for.  Gerald says to dig a large hole, much bigger than the plant, put the top soil and sub soil in different piles and add manure to both, mixing it up well. Fork the sides and base of the hole to ensure good drainage & water well. plant the clematis deeper than it is in the pot, fill in with the soils and heel in firmly. Keep well watered and fed. They had bags of feed for sale, also catalogues with all the varieties of clematis and their care, a good buy for anybody who was still concerned about how to look after their own plants.
Pauline had a good tip for planting into pots, she said to use a large pot, about 18 inches to 2 feet deep, line it with foil, shiny side to the pot, then thick layers of newspaper, finally multi-purpose compost. This helps the pots from drying out.
Every year the compost will need to be topped up with fresh.

Gerald with their catalogue.

After the tea break, during which time the plants were on sale and the raffle was called, Gerald showed us some photos of the various varieties. there were a lot of different colours and forms, some like little bells. He stressed that when choosing a plant, to bear in mind the position it will occupy and when you want it to flower. Pruning was discussed, as it was causing a lot of confusion among many of the members.
It was a very thought-provoking evening and we all came away with new knowledge about Clematis.

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