With blooms from midsummer to autumn, Clematis viticella is a hardy species that comes with few concerns.
Cultivars of Clematis viticella are ideal for growing through roses, evergreen and deciduous shrubs and smaller fruit trees without strangling them. You could also grow them on trellis, cut them for vases or even have them as ground cover.
Pruning them is simple – as part of pruning Group 3, they're pruned in early spring and, especially when the plants are young, you can usually prune the whole plant with just one snip. This is done by gathering all the stems in your hand, about 20-35cm above the soil, and snipping through the whole lot with your secateurs. The surge of growth that results will carry flowers from July to September.
Find out how to prune all types of clematis, plus some handy clematis care tips.
Discover some of the best varieties of Clematis viticella to grow, below.
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A deep and sultry blue-purple, darkest as it first opens. Often flowers into October. As a viticella clematis, 'Polish Spirit' shows good resistance to clematis wilt.
Prolific crinkled flowers. Ideal with white or pink climbing roses. Very vigorous. Try combining 'Abundance' with other pink-flowered plants like Achillea 'Cerise Queen', or climbers like the purple bell vine.
Clematis viticella 'Black Prince' has some of the darkest flowers out there. Given that they're so dark, this variety would suit a bright spot where the blooms can't be missed.
'Minuet' has striking flowers with purplish red veins and margins. Pretty in posies. Looks beautiful allowed to scramble over a pergola. Check out more plants for pergolas.
'Huldine' is a white-flowered variety that performs best in a warm, sunny spot. It flowers from July to October and looks beautiful grown through a shrub or tree.
'Purpurea Plena Elegans'
'Purpurea Plena Elegans' has fully double flowers that weigh down the branches, so it's best grown through a stout shrub. Try combining with a white-flowered clematis, for example Clematis florida var. flore-pleno.
Caring for Clematis viticella
- Position: any good soil that doesn't dry out, but isn't waterlogged. Best with roots shaded by a shrub or perennial and top growth in sun or partial shade
- Hardiness: hardy all over the UK, RHS rating H6
- Height x spread: 3-4m x 1-2m
- Care: prune hard each spring and feed with rose fertiliser. In dry spells, drench plants growing on walls