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Decision on Clematis!!!

Posted by Ibanez540r 5 - OH (My Page) on
Thu, Apr 7, 11 at 2:25

I'm looking to add a clematis to a trellis I built last summer for my Don Juan climbing rose. The trellis is an "inside corner" with the right side being approx. 5 ft. wide and 8-10 feet tall. The Don Juan is centered in front of this section. The left side is approx. 6ft wide and 4-5 feet tall (under a window)... sounds weird but I'll have to post pictures. Anyway, I'd like to start a Clematis on the left side to fill it in and work it's way through the rose onto the other section. Spring is just starting here in North East Ohio and I have been researching clematis all winter. I have come down to the following three and keep reading and reading with nothing leaning my decision;

Etoile Violette
Polish Spirit
Jackmanii Superba

They all seem quite similar. I've read through many forums through the months and get some conflicting information. ...just wonder opinions from people with experience with these? Help sway my decision, please!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Are you necessarily set on a blue/purple flower? I would love to see a white flowered (or near white) clematis in contrast to the red flowers of Don Juan. And I would stick to a pruning group 3 selection (hard prune) just for ease of maintenance with the rose.....and group 3's tend to be less inclined to clematis wilt, especially those with viticella parentage. Given all that, I'd look at 'Alba Luxurians', 'Huldine', 'Little Nell', 'White Magic' or 'Consort'.

Otherwise, if you prefer the deeper color, any of the three you listed should work fine.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

I have Etoile Violette and Polish Spirit and Polish Spirit blooms a lot longer for me so I'd choose that one.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

"I'd look at 'Alba Luxurians', 'Huldine', 'Little Nell', 'White Magic' or 'Consort'" ...

I would tend to agree with the selection of a white flowering variety looking particularly good ... or, how about a light blue, such as 'Prince Charles' or 'Emilia Plater'?


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

  • Posted by bob414 USDA 9 Sunset 15 (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 7, 11 at 18:38

I grow Mrs. Cholmondeley on one side of Don Juan and Huldine on the other. Can't find a picture of the Huldine side but here's Mrs. Cholmondeley and Don Juan.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Thanks so far, but I am not interested in white. I know the contrast would be great, but in my case the entire trellis is all bright white vinyl. So, I just don't think the white would "pop" as much.

Anyway, I am open to suggestions. I'm staying with a Group 3, but really want something that's definitely going to make it to the top of the 8-10 foot side of the trellis every year after being cut back. Long bloom would be great as well. So, so far that's why I have come up with the three I listed. If something else fits the bill, please explain.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Just came across Venosa Violacea!! Think I fell in love. It has the white to contrast and also the purple for some color. I LOVE bi-color, but didn't know there were any viticella group 3's. What do you think with don juan and how is it overall?


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

I fell hard for Venosa Violacea also! My Venosa Violacea was a quite vigorous plant that grew and bloomed well in 3/4 shade for several years until a bad vole winter when it got eaten. It shared space with a Rosa mundi, a lilac and some other perennials weaving among them all without overwhelming anyone. I have planted a new one in a different bed, this one sunny. I am thinking that it may be even more vigorous in the sunny bed, but last year was its first season.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Yeah... "smothering" is a new interesting factor. I had e-mailed back and forth with the owner of Silver Star Vinery - and she told me I should NOT do a etoile violette, huldine, polish spirit, etc. with a Don Juan. She said they will smother the rose out? ..I was surprised as it seems many of you here use these with roses often. I totally respect her opinion though as she obviously knows what she is doing, but am confused because of the many that do.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

  • Posted by bob414 USDA 9 Sunset 15 (My Page) on
    Sat, Apr 9, 11 at 18:13

Huldine is planted next to Don Juan in my garden. It grows on the same fence that I tie the laterals of Don Juan to. Huldine is very vigorous (as are Etoile Violette and Polish Spirit) and I suspect that if they were using the rose for support they might very well smother it.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

I have Huldine growing up a plum tree and Polish Spirit growing up a crabapple. They are that big. Etoile Violette is on a nine foot tall trellis and reaches the top and flops back down every year after being pruned to six inches.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

I second your choice of purple for Don Juan. I'd vote for Polish Spirit. (Star of India would be my other choice). So sad to see big clematis blooms overpowering a smaller-flower(ered) rose.

Venosa Violacea looks best with soft orange roses ie. Royal Sunset (cl.), IMO. Sets off the violet tones. Haven't seen her with golden yellow yet.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Placed my order with silver star vinery for Etoile Violette. Can't wait to get it in.


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RE: Decision on Clematis!!!

Got my Etoile VIolette in today from Silver Star. Nice packaging, as she warned me the plant itself was nothing impressive (about the size of my fist) but had a pretty nice root system. After I loosened them up some were close to a foot long. Dug a nice large hole, mixed 50/50 original dirt & compost pre-mix. Planted it a few inches below grade at a 45 degree angle to encourage new growth. Wait to see how she does.

What's an average expectation the first year?


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