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Clematis, better known under the term clematis or "queen of the climbing plants", is a genus within the buttercup family (bot. Ranunculaceae) and popular because of the picturesque flowers. Numerous types of clematis can be planted in your own garden and effectively climb fences, trellises or facades. If you want to multiply your specimens, there are various methods that can be implemented without any problems, ranging from cultivation to seeds to classic offshoots.

Propagating clematis

If you have decided to use your clematis as a basis for propagation, you can look forward to three different methods. Depending on the type, location and purpose of the clematis, a different method is used. For example, the first cultivation is over without any problems seed possible while you're about offshoot and cuttings easily grow more specimens from a healthy mother plant. For each variant, you will find detailed instructions below that will make it much easier for you to propagate the popular plant.

tip: In addition to the methods already mentioned above, you can also divide the rootstock of your clematis. However, this proves difficult, especially with well-branched and large specimens, as they are difficult to dig up when they have grown extensively.


Propagation via seeds is not only ideal for further clematis specimens, but also for sowing your first clematis. However, you should be aware that of the numerous types of clematis available, some are more suitable for seed cultivation than others. For example, if you have large-flowered hybrids like the 'Nelly Moser' variety, you should avoid growing them from seed. Even the first generation of these hybrids would no longer correspond to the actual variety and differ from it in terms of characteristics. The following clematis species have been found to be effective for propagation from seed:

  • Alpine clematis (bot. C. alpina)
  • Mongolian clematis (bot. C. tangutica)
  • Clematis (bot. C. vitalba)
  • Large-flowered alpine clematis (bot. C. macropetala)
  • Mountain clematis (bot. C. montana)
  • Italian clematis (bot. C. viticella)

All of these species are naturally occurring taxa. Of course there are others that are not hybrids, but the ones mentioned above are ideal for breeding. You could even collect the seeds of common clematis and alpine clematis in the wild as these are found in Central Europe.

Alpine Clematis, Clematis Alpina

Sowing instructions

The best time for propagation is in winter after flowering. During flowering, which ranges from June to late autumn depending on the species, you should simply harvest the seeds. Since these are cold germs, they require stratification:

  • outdoor stratification is ideal
  • Move seeds outside just before the onset of winter
  • prepare pots with substrate for this
  • Substrate: seed soil, herbal soil
  • Moisten the substrate
  • one seed per pot
  • Distribute three to five millimeters of soil over the seed
  • Cover pots with a transparent film
  • alternatively use a large glass
  • now bring the pots into the garden
  • the location should be in the penumbra

It is important to air the room for 30 minutes every day to prevent mold from forming. While you air, you must also water daily, since the seed never dry out may. Sowing is the slowest of all propagation methods and some clematis seeds may take up to three years to sprout. You are particularly lucky with seeds from wild specimens. Ideally, they only need one winter to sprout the following year. All the while, don't forget to water the seeds, otherwise they will dry up and all your work will be for naught. If you can look forward to seedlings, they are then pricked out in individual pots.

tip: It is advisable to sterilize the selected substrates before use. This increases the chance of early germination.


Perennial clematis are particularly suitable for cuttings, as they have a strong urge to grow and are therefore ideal for developing roots. This means the following types:

  • Whole-leaf clematis (bot. C. integrifolia)
  • Large-leaved clematis (bot. C. heracleifolia)
  • Clematis (bot. C. recta)

Propagation via cuttings: instructions

Otherwise, you do not need much for the cuttings propagation, because this is the simplest of all variants. The right time for this is independent of the type of May to June, since the clematis need quite warm temperatures for the development of roots. In the case of late-blooming species, August is even possible. The following instructions explain exactly how the cuttings propagation works:

  • Cut off the cuttings with a sharp, disinfected knife or secateurs
  • Clemantis cuttings should be 15 to 20 cm long
  • always cut off between two leaf nodes
  • defoliate the shoots
  • leaving two leaves at the top
  • Treat interface with rooting hormone
  • this significantly improves rooting
  • alternatively: dip the interface in honey
  • Prepare pots according to the number of clematis cuttings
  • pricking soil is ideal as a substrate
  • plant the cuttings in them
  • the tip with the leaves must look out of the ground
  • only pour over the saucer
  • now stick shashlik skewers into the ground and cover with transparent foil, e.g. B. freezer bags or cling film
  • as a result, the plastic hood does not fall on the clematis cuttings
  • the hood must remain on the pots for the next six to eight weeks
  • Place pots in a warm, partially shaded spot

Never let the soil dry out and ventilate at all times. As a result, no mold forms, which would mean the end for the young plants. It is aired for half an hour every day. As soon as the first shoots have formed, you can remove the hood. When the first roots appear that grow out of the planter, repot in a suitable substrate and start normal care.

tip: If the clematis propagates successfully, you can look forward to one of the few ornamental plants that can grow very old and still delight your children and grandchildren. Some species can reach an age limit of up to 70 years as long as they are well cared for.


You can propagate any type of clematis, even hybrids, using offshoots. All you need for this method is a healthy plant and some patience. Since this is a simple method that doesn't require much waiting time, it is particularly popular with gardeners. You need for an offshoot:

  • Flower pot with drainage hole
  • classic potting soil
  • Tent peg or similar stainless metal hook
  • bamboo stick (thin)
  • plant binder
  • sharp, disinfected secateurs

Propagating clematis via offshoots: instructions

The best time to drop is end of summer. The following instructions will help you to successfully propagate your clematis via offshoots:

1. First select a shoot from which you want to grow a new clematis. This should be healthy, strong and still quite young. Already lignified shoots are not recommended, as they are difficult to sprout. In addition, the shoot must be on the edge of the plant, as this will make it easier for you to bend it to the ground.

2. Fill the pot with the potting soil and bury it in the ground up to the rim. This method is recommended so that the prospective young plant does not have to grow directly next to the existing clematis. Now bend the shoot down to the ground. Make sure that at least half of the selected offshoot should stick out of the ground so that it remains big enough. The part that bends to the bottom needs to be defoliated.

3. Fix the shoot to the ground using the tent peg and the upper part to the bamboo pole using the plant ties. Now the clematis scion can sprout. Water well and make sure that the growing substrate does not even dry out.

4. The discd shoot remains in this way until spring. Now carefully check the pot to see if it has roots. If so, the shoot is separated from the mother plant and the new clematis is either cultivated in a pot for a year or planted in the garden. Then carry on with the care as usual.

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