Planting clematis vines can make almost any area bright and colorful. These plants can be difficult to grow, but with the right conditions they will return year after year. Knowing the right soil mixtures can make all the difference in how successful one is in growing this type of flowering vine.
Clematis require rich soil. It needs to drain easily and have a neutral pH. It is best if the root system is kept cool at all times. To achieve this, one can plant other flowers or shrubs around the base of the clematis to ensure it is well shaded from the heat of the sun.
It is also important to check the condition of the soil before planting. If the pH level is not a neutral 7, it may be necessary to add more phosphorus. If the soil has a highly acidic level, adding lime can correct this problem. The closer the pH level is to being neutral, the more success one will have in growing a healthy clematis vine.
Enriching the soil when planting a clematis vine can give the plant a jump start to healthy growth. Adding manure, small chips of bark, peat moss or compost can improve the condition of the soil. This provides additional nutrients and minerals and is especially important if the soil is partially clay.
While new growth is being established, fertilize the plant yearly. Add half a pound of 15-5-5 fertilizer to the surrounding 50 square feet of the plant. Once the vine is established and thriving well, this may no longer be necessary.