Clematis Wilt

(Question)

Hello , I am having problems with my Clematis vine and wilt , could you recommend a variety that is less problematic and what is the best source of getting these plants in the GTA area or outside?

(Answer)

The good news is that clematis wilt is rarely fatal for the plants; and the even better news is that the Royal Horticultural Society has done excellent research on the subject; including a list of the varieties that are more resistant to wilt. They recommend:  Clematis ‘Avant Garde’, ‘Bonanza’, ‘Confetti’, C. alpinaC. montanaC. orientalisC. viticella (which is tolerant rather than resistant), C. integrifoliaC. macropetalaC. tangutica.

They also warn that certain varieties are more subject to wilt, specifically:  Clematis ‘Henryi’, ‘Vyvyan Pennell’, ‘Mrs N. Thompson’, ‘Duchess of Edinburgh’, ‘William Kennett’,‘Marie Boisselot/Madame le Coultre’‘Ernest Markham’Clematis‘Comtesse de Bouchaud’C. ‘Jackmanii’ and C. ‘Nelly Moser’ .

If you’d like to read more about the disease, you can reach the RHS site by clicking here.

Almost every nursery and garden centre sells clematis; the online sources, such as may have more varieties on offer. Three such sources in Canada are Garden Import, Botanus and Hortico. Note that they tend to sell out their stock early, so may have a limited supply at this time.

However, cut your existing wilted clematis right back and it may well grow up again for you this year.