ID question

jacqueline9CAMarch 10, 2013

This clematis is growing on an arch along with the rose 'Sombreuil'. I planted it at least 15 years ago. I have no idea who it is. I thought I saw it in several catalouges over the years, and ordered "it", only to get a series of other purple clematis which are NOT it. I love the size of the blooms, and the dark royal purple color.

Any suggestions from this picture? Would pictures of other parts of the plant, or close-ups, make it possible to identify? If so, please let me know just what is needed, and I will see if I can find more pictures of it.

I am very ignorant about clematis, obviously. I almost killed this one. It was all tangled up with the rose, which is a killer rose to prune, and they had gotten so heavy that they were pulling over the arch they were growing on. So, about 4-5 weeks ago I cut down the clematis to two feet high (just a bare vine), and my DH attacked the rose. The rose, of course, is leafing out and setting buds. The clematis remnant just sat there. I have no idea if it is a I, or a II, or a III, and I have always found those numbers and rules so confusing I ignore them always. Anyway, this morning to my joy I saw some new green clematis leaves popping out of the dirt about 4 inches away from the old trunk - YAY! my gorgeous mystery clematis is alive!

Now I would like to know who it is - any thoughts or suggestions about other pictures to get?

Thanks very much for your help with this - sorry I am so ignorant.


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Looks a lot like jackmanii, which, while it can be a bit variable, tends to have 4 sepaled, 5-7" blooms of a deep purple color. Clematis jackmanii is a very robust and heavily flowering vine and is very widely grown and sold. It is one of the earliest developed of the large flowered hybrids and is considered a parent of many modern day hybrids.

It is rather easy to determine what pruning group a particular clematis belongs to according to the time it blooms - Type I clematis bloom very early, usually before May and bloom on old growth. Pruning is usually limited to immediately after blooming only to control size.

Type II clematis bloom anywhere between May and July and frequently with a late summer/early autumn rebloom. Most Type II's bloom on a mix of both old and new growth, so pruning established vines is done lightly in late winter and again lightly after the initial bloom flush. Virtually all Type II clematis are the large flowered hybrids.

Type III clematis are later flowering and bloom from mid to late summer (July) often well into fall. Jackmanii falls into this category. These bloom on new growth produced the current season and established vines are hard pruned each winter. Most of the vines included in this group are species clematis or viticella hybrids with a few large flowered hybrids thrown in the mix to confuse you :-)

It is helpful to remember that pruning "rules" are only pruning guidelines - you can choose to follow them or not. Generally not following the 'rules' will only lead to a missing or sparse bloom or a tangled vine, not death! Really, the only pruning practice I would encourage you to follow without deviation is to hard prune any type clematis the first couple of seasons in the ground. This just makes for a more well-developed root system and mutilple vining stems, among other features.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:21PM
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Thank you so much! Now I can look it up. Thanks also for the explanation of the different types - now it make much more sense.


    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 7:53PM
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