Perennial vines are usually woody climbing or trailing plants that can be trained to grow up a vertical support such as a trellis, arbor post or wall. They grow on a support by twining their branches or by clinging with tendrils.
Some perennial vines, such as wisteria or grapes, are well suited to give shade when grown over an arbor. Others, such as Boston ivy and English ivy grow well up walls or around doorways. Still others, such as Virginia creeper, make wonderful maintenance-free ground covers. Everyone loves colorful clematis growing on their mailbox post.
Clematis have special pruning groups. Don’t prune the first year. Wait until plants have been established for 1 year.
Group 1 - None - Flowers on last year’s stems. Only remove dead, weak or damaged stems.
Group 2 - Moderate - Flowers on last year’s stems. Prune in April or early May. Remove dead, weak
stems and trim just enough to keep it under control.
Group 3 - Hard - This group flowers on new growth each year. In late April or early May, remove old growth to about 12-18” above the ground, giving the plant a fresh start each year.