Clematis

Clematis: This rich garden bloomer has a head for heights

Green in winter, and a profusion of flowers in the frost-free months: Clematis is an easy plant that will soon wrap itself around your green heart.

In the summer, Clematis treats you to lavish curtains of flowers, whilst in the winter the evergreen species mean you still have greenery in your garden. This popular climber does well in the garden or on the balcony, and is a resilient companion. The woody tendrils seek out their own support, easily wrap themselves around things and so climb smoothly upwards or along an arch, pergola or other shape. The flowers are breathtaking, and range from small, cute pale pink flowers through to giants that can achieve a diameter of 24 cm. There’s no lack of choice when it comes to colour either, ranging from very pale pink through pink, lilac and indigo to blue and purple. And the flowers come in both gorgeous simplicity (four petals around a yellow heart) and as double showstoppers in various colours with frills in the middle.

Clematis 3Clematis Angela

Temperate type

Clematis is a herbaceous climber from the Ranunculus family, and grows in temperate regions in both the northern and southern hemispheres. The first wild varieties probably developed in China. From there they reached Japan in the 17th century, in order to conquer the West a century later. There are hundreds of species, of which the blue Clematis x jackmanii has been well-established in European gardens since 1862. This is one of the original plants from which many new varieties have been cultivated. By placing early and late bloomers together you will have flowers from early spring through to the autumn. Young Clematises are quite delicate, but the plants that have been around for a while are pretty tough.

Clematis 2Clematis montana rubens

Trivia

The Latin name Clematis is derived from the Greek word 'clématis' which means trailing or climbing plant. 

  • Clematis is an ingredient in the famous Bach Rescue Remedy, the drops to counter stress. 

  • The plant symbolises ambition and self-awareness, striving to be the best

Clematis Care

Choose a spot where the plant can climb upwards with some support (frame, string, wire, fence) to wrap itself around. 

  • The foliage and the flowers can tolerate full sun, but Clematis’s roots like to keep cool. Place a shrub in front of the climber to provide shade, or cover the base with stones or a couple of roof tiles.

  • Clematis likes a drink - never allow the soil to dry out. 

  • Give extra food during the growing period from March to May. Do not feed during flowering. 

  • Prune after flowering (check what the ideal time is according to the variety). 

  • Clematis is very hardy.