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The National collection of Clematis viticella cultivars.

This collection of summer flowering clematis (which have as part of their parentage Clematis viticella) are spread around the garden growing up a variety of other plants, as well as on trellises with other climbers. 3 of each plant are maintained as part of the collection but in some cases one or more of these may be in a pot in order we can display them at shows and exhibitions, so yes they are fine in pots! There are currently 85 cultivars 1 species and 1 sub species forming the collection.

The time of flowering can vary by two or three weeks according to season, but generally starts in May with Clematis 'Etoile Violette' seen here on the right. With more plants joining in through June and July, and with the latest flowerers starting by August.

Most Clematis viticella cultivars will flower for around 3 months with some like 'Purple Haze' and 'Polish Spirit' nearer 4 months. Most years at least 6 different cultivars will still be flowering in October.

Of the cultivars, most date from the mid 1800's to early 1900's but there has of late been a resurgence of interest and some some are quite recently raised.

Clematis 'Venosa Violacea' (left) dates from 1883, here growing through an excellent, scented, evergreen honeysuckle, Lonicera similis delavayi. While 'Etoile Violet' above is dated1885 colonises a Catalpa tree.

Seen on the right is single denim blue 'Vanessa' it is an excellent late performer and dates from the 1990's while the double flowered Clematis 'Mary Rose' is thought to be Clematis viticella Flora Plena and is the oldest known cultivar still in cultivation, being first mentioned in the 1500's Both plants seen here scrambling through the black stemmed bamboo Phyllostachys niger.

Below the fruit cage provides a home for several different cultivars blue flowered 'Emilia Plater' came from Poland in 1988. The nodding flowers of 'Etoile Rose and 'Alba-Luxurians' in the background both date to the early 1900's

None of the plants in the collection are difficult to grow all will do well despite poor growing conditions. We find the ability to cut these plants back to the ground during winter one of the most useful features. If you want to find out more we are always happy to help with any aspects of cultivation.

All the plants are available from the nursery and can be found highlighted on the clematis list

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