This is my salad-plate size clematis blooming, compliments of another year. Right now (April 24) the plant is barely a foot high. I am encouraged because it is very bushy and had lots of tendrils anxious to climb, but it is really small. Over the past few years it has had a tendency to mound on the ground and spill into the lawn. I want it to climb, like in this photo below.
Yesterday I cut away all of the dead plant material off of the twine and removed the tangle of leaves. I restrung the twine that the vine will grab onto (in a criss cross pattern) and hopefully, by the end of May, my clematis will be blooming on the wall. I gently wrapped a few of the tendrils around a piece of string to lead it up to the twine grid. I will go out daily to keep the tendrils climbing in the right direction.
When the stars and moon align, you can see the purple blooms that have climbed the twine from inside my family room. It is so pretty to see the healthy green vine, boasting a lavender bloom, waving in the breeze.
And then today it started to snowing. Spring...a girl can only dream.
***UPDATE: June 16, 2013 - LOOK! It is magnificent! I've trained it to follow the criss-cross twine and the periwinkle blooms are able to be seen from the family room. Success! The large leaf plants at the base of each side are hollyhocks. I planted 2 pink hollyhock plants there and I'm hoping to get bright 6 foot tall spikes of color.