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New Clematis Arrived-What do I need to do now?

14 years ago

The 'Crystal Fountain' clematis I ordered came in today that was ordered from Garden Crossings online. I have never grown a clematis before, so any advice is welcome. I thought about posting on the clematis forum, but as I think we tend to have 'unique' weather in Oklahoma, figured I'd ask here instead. The clematis is about 2 feet tall and has a couple buds on it. It arrived in good condition. I watered it a little as the soil was on the dry side and I am planning to plant it tomorrow or Saturday. Now for the questions: When I make a trellis, how wide and how far apart should the slats be? Do clematis tend to twine on their own or do they need tying?

It will be on the south side of my house, but the soil is good and I have mulch. But should I plant it 'behind' my fountain to grow up the wall or in the more open area about 10 feet to the other side which is just bare brick wall? The reason I am asking about the fountain area, is when the fountain pump is on, some water does splash and I don't know if clematis can suffer from any diseases like powdery mildew? If it does, then I may just plant further down. I can't think of any other questions, and I'm sure I will later, but all tips are sincerely welcome.

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