When you run out of space on the ground for any more plants, the only way is up. I wander round the garden looking at the trees and shrubs, wondering which are strong enough to support a clematis. Also, just because an arch or pergola already has a climber up it, maybe a clematis can be added for extra colour, either to flower at the same time as the original climber or to extend the season.My favourite family of clematis are the viticellas. When we first came here and I planted some of the large flowered varieties, they all succumbed to clematis wilt, something the viticellas will never d0.
Having had so much rain over the past 3 months, the clematis on the pergola at the top of the garden have really taken off and are now climbing up the Bramley apple tree. Because it has been so wet, I haven’t been able to keep training them in the direction that I wanted them to go and they are now doing their own thing.
The clematis by the dead oak are trained on tripods but once again they are now escaping from where I would really like them, this one is Clematis durandii with a peach coloured rose.
Another Clematis, Etoile Violet climbing into Rosa Mulligani which is up the dead oak. It has certainly made a lot of growth this year, the obelisk is nowhere to be seen!
The same Etoille violette spreading sideways as well as upwards, this time over Myrtus communis, the common myrtle, they look nice together.
Climbing up the pergola is C. Abundance, this one can certainly climb, it says capable of 20ft and I would agree with that!
Not too sure what the next two are, they are round the back on the arbour in the corner. This area was made to give us some nice shade from the sun…..ha ha….not this year!
Is this the same one ? I know I planted Rouge Cardinal in this spot, but this isn’t red enough, I think it could be a newly opened flower which looks slightly different from an older flower.
Clematis Margot Koster certainly puts out a fantastic number of flowers, she is absolutely covered for weeks, if not months. She doesn’t like being trained up the pergola, as soon as I tie in some shoots, there are more waving their long arms at me!
Pagoda is a smaller clematis, only growing 8 ft up a metal obelisk near the back door. Some question whether it is a viticella or whether it has texensis blood in it, whatever it has, it makes a nice dainty clematis.
Clematis Perle d’Azur is another that we have climbing up the pergola, this time sharing its space with a white climbing rose.
Another strong grower on the pergola, is C. Alba Luxuriens, the small flowers hang down at first but then open out fully and face outwards. They quite often have touches of green on the outer sepals and there is a hint of purple at the centre.
Growing up the pergola along with Alba Luxuriens is Clematis Mary Rose, originally called Flora Pleno. This is an ancient variety of clematis, dating from the 1500s when Henry v111 was on the throne of England. Henry had a warship, the Mary Rose, which sank near Portsmouth while in battle with the French. The clematis Flora Pleno was lost to cultivation until discovered in a garden here in Devon in 1981. In 1982 , Henry’s warship, the Mary Rose, was raised from the seabed and preserved. Permission was sought to change the name of the clematis and call it after the warship, permission was granted and the rest, as they say, is history! The flower is quite small, but there are so many of them that it doesn’t matter.
One of my last clematis to flower, is in the front garden on a trellis to hide a huge water butt and is Blekitny Aniol or Blue Angel. This is a lovely shade of pale blue and shares the space with an early flowered Alpina clematis. Still to flower is Huldine which is on the pergola, but that will be next month.
No tree is safe from having a climber added, I did try once putting one up an evergreen shrub, but all the shrub foliage that was covered, died off. Didn’t repeat that! I have been very pleased with the clematis that I have put up trees, mainly early ones up till now, but who knows what I will plant this autumn to decorate the trees for next year!!