Of the more than 200 clematis species, most are deciduous vines; exceptions include the useful evergreen vine C. armandii, as well as some interesting upright herbaceous types.
Attractive blooms come in a wide variety of shapes; they may resemble bells, stars, tulips, saucers, urns—even miniature lanterns. Each flower consists of a central brush of stamens surrounded by petallike segments called sepals. Range of flower colors is wide, from pastel pinks to crimson red; periwinkle blue through soft lavender shades, rich magenta, and dark purple; and pure white through creamy tones and even golden yellow. Unless otherwise specified, blooms are 4–6 in. across. Float cut flowers in a bowl of water to make a choice indoor display. Burn cut ends of stems with a match to make flowers last longer. The blossoms of the large-flowered hybrids and a few species are followed by fluffy clusters of seed heads, also useful for flower arrangements.
Leaves vary from pale to dark green, usually divided into leaflets. Leafstalks twist and curl to hold plant to its support.
Deciduous vine, native to Europe and Asia. Grows to 6–8 ft., with lacy, soft green foliage. Early-spring blooms are nodding and bell-shaped, with four pointed sepals in white, pink, periwinkle blue, or purple, depending on the variety. An inner skirt of stamens is creamy white in most varieties. Blooms are followed by decorative seed heads. Plants are extremely cold hardy.
‘Constance’ has reddish pink flowers; ‘Pamela Jackman’ has blue flowers. ‘Ruby’ grows to 8 ft. with lacy, soft green foliage. Early spring blooms are nodding and bell-shaped, with four pointed sepals in rosy pink.
Deciduous vine, native to Europe and Asia. Grows to 6–8 ft., with lacy, soft green foliage. Earl...
The basic species has scarlet flowers surrounded by reddish bracts. All bloom over a long period of 2 ...
Grows to 8 in. high; spreads by rhizomes and stolons to 3 ft. wide. Leaves are 1–3 in. long, gre...