How Do I Prune A Nelly Moser Clematis?

Stacy Randall
by Stacy Randall

Known for its signature star shape, Nelly Moser Clematis is a favorite of gardeners everywhere. This pink floral vine is easy to grow and adapts easily to its environment. Because of this, Nelly Moser Clematis’s growth can get out of hand if not tended to properly, so it’s important to know how to prune a Nelly Moser Clematis.

To prune a Nelly Moser Clematis, prune back new plants to just above a strong pair of leaf buds, close to the soil. For established plants, prune just above healthy growth on individual stems, but don’t over prune or you’ll lose flowers. It’s best to prune Nelly Moser Clematis once in late winter/early spring and again after the first flush of flowers in the summer.

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How To Prune Nelly Moser Clematis

Clematises are separated into three groups based on when they bloom and their characteristics. Nelly Moser Clematis falls into the second group, meaning it blooms twice a year.

Because Nelly Moser Clematis can bloom twice a year, it should be pruned twice a year as well. Prune your Nelly Moser Clematis in late winter or early spring and after the first flowers bloom in early summer.

Pruning Nelly Moser Clematis In The Winter Or Early Spring

Before new growth begins, prune away any dead or weak stems. For individual stems, cut just above healthy buds.

This technique will remove any damaged or dead stems and allow the flowers to flourish. However, do not prune away too many vines and stems or this will hinder future growth.

Pruning After The First Bloom

To ensure a second bloom of flowers, prune your Nelly Moser Clematis back a bit after the first flush of flowers in the summer. Cut stems just above large buds and get rid of all the scraggly stuff above. It’s also important to remove all dead or damaged stems.

If some flowers appear overgrown or top-heavy, you can snip these away to encourage more even growth later. If you do this, those stems won’t experience a second bloom but will bloom the following season.

Hard Prune Your Nelly Moser Clematis

If you’re afraid pruning twice a year might hinder growth, you can do a hard prune instead. Prune one to three feet from the base of the Nelly Moser Clematis sometime in late winter.

Note: You should only perform a hard prune every three to four years.

Doing a hard prune will prevent Nelly Moser Clematis’s repeat flowering in the first year after pruning. Afterward, it should flower twice.

Things To Know Before Planting Nelly Moser Clematis

Nelly Moser Clematis is beloved by gardeners for its bright and beautiful star-shaped flowers. If you’re looking to add this pink flower to your home garden, consider the following:

  • Nelly Moser Clematis blooms twice a year, in late spring to early summer and late summer to early fall. 
  • Plant Nelly Moser Clematis in moist, well-drained soils.
  • The best conditions for Nelly Moser Clematis are in full sun or part shade. But, it thrives best in a partly shaded area.
  • Keep Nelly Moser Clematis roots cool.
  • Nelly Moser Clematis can grow anywhere from eight to ten feet in length. 
  • You can train Nelly Moser Clematis to be climbing plants on trellises and walls. It also functions just fine in containers. 

How To Grow Nelly Moser Clematis

If Nelly Moser Clematis sounds like the perfect plant for your garden, follow these steps to grow it:

Step 1: Choose The Best Time And Location

Choose the location for your Nelly Moser Clematis, making sure to plant it in moist soil. It can thrive in the sun but should have a bit of shade to make it last longer. Avoid placing Nelly Moser Clematis next to a wooden structure, as the plant can rot.

Note: You should plant Nelly Moser Clematis in the spring so that it can bloom in summer.

Step 2: Plant The Nelly Moser Clematis

Once you’ve found the perfect spot for your Nelly Moser Clematis, dig a hole that is twice as wide and twice as deep as the plant’s container.

Put the entire root ball of the Nelly Moser Clematis in the freshly dug hole. The crown of the plant should be about 1 to 2-inches below the surface. Note: Be gentle when planting. Nelly Moser Clematis root systems are thin and can break easily.

Stick the stake that came with the Nelly Moser Clematis about 2-inches into the ground. Finally, refill the hole around the plant.

Step 3: Add Mulch And Water

Once you refill the hole, place two to three inches of mulch on top of the hole. Next, water generously to allow the roots to settle.

Step 4: Maintain Your Nelly Moser Clematis

Water the Nelly Moser Clematis weekly to ensure proper growth. However, avoid overwatering due to rain.

Tip: Place wire mesh around the Nelly Moser Clematis. This will work to protect the young plant from small animals looking for food.

How to Support Nelly Moser Clematis As It Grows

Nelly Moser Clematis is an excellent climber. It can climb on a trellis, chicken wire, a wall, or a fence.

Always plant Nelly Moser Clematis about a foot away from the support structure. This distance gives the roots space to grow and prevents damage.

Use A Trellis

Nelly Moser Clematis can grow between six and ten feet in height and spread anywhere from one to three feet in width. Because of this, it can be supported by a lightweight trellis and does not require stronger structural support.

Nelly Moser Clematis vines can only wrap around supports less than ¼ inch in diameter. Therefore, keep this information in mind when purchasing a trellis.

Install the trellis behind where you plan to plant the Nelly Moser Clematis. You should install your trellis before you plant the Nelly Moser Clematis. Otherwise, you may accidentally damage the roots of the plant.

Use Chicken Wire

Nelly Moser Clematis can also be coaxed to climb chicken wire. Tack the chicken wire into the ground behind the plant. Simply tie twist ties around the vines to encourage directional growth.

Some gardeners suggest installing chicken wire as a training trellis. A training trellis made of chicken wire should be attached to an actual trellis behind it.

The Nelly Moser Clematis will utilize the chicken wire for its first-year growth. Then, it will continue to grow on the larger trellis as the years go on.

Plant It Near A Wall

The structural support of a wall isn’t necessary for Nelly Moser Clematis. However, a wall covered in this pink flowering vine will be a lovely pop of color for your garden.

To coax Nelly Moser Clematis up a wall, do the following:

  • Hammer masonry nails at even distances into the chosen wall.
  • String a thin wire between the nails in a design of your choosing. Popular styles are upright or fan-shaped.
  • Once you plant the Nelly Moser Clematis, place bamboo stakes around it. Using string or plant ties, attach the vines to the stakes. This will help guide them up the wall.
  • Once the vines grow tall enough, attach the Nelly Moser Clematis to the wall ties.

Plant Your Nelly Moser Clematis Near A Fence

Helping your Nelly Moser Clematis grow on a fence is very similar to growing it on a wall.

Follow these steps to achieve vine growth on a fence:

  • Cut short pieces of string. If using plant ties, skip this step.
  • Staple the short pieces of string or the plant ties to the fence slats. Do so in a fan-shaped pattern or vertically up the posts.
  • As with the wall, stick bamboo stakes in the ground around the Nelly Moser Clematis. Attach the vines to the stakes with plant ties to guide it up the fence.
  • Finally, tie the vines to the fence with the string once it has reached that height.

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Related Questions

What do I do if Nelly Moser Clematis outgrows its intended space?

If your Nelly Moser Clematis grows a bit too wild, you can trim it back to 5-feet. You should do this in the fall or early spring.

What happens if you don’t prune your Clematis?

If you don’t prune your Clematis, it won’t die. However, it won’t flower as intensely as it would if you do prune as necessary.

However you choose to let it climb, your pruned Nelly Moser Clematis will be a beautiful addition to any landscape.

Stacy Randall
Stacy Randall

Stacy Randall is a wife, mother, and freelance writer from NOLA that has always had a love for DIY projects, home organization, and making spaces beautiful. Together with her husband, she has been spending the last several years lovingly renovating her grandparent's former home, making it their own and learning a lot about life along the way.

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