Now that is some Clematis


I knew we had a clematis clinging precariously to a trellis on our property, but as soon as I saw Jason Edmondson’s photo of the clematis chosen to be the July cover of the The Pender Post, I began to wonder about the lineage of the impostor in our garden.

Edmondson lives on Pender Island and works as landscaper, groundskeeper, and gardener for many properties. He has been taking photographs for two years and took our cover photo with his trusty Huawei cell phone. Edmondson estimates that our cover clematis flower was about six to seven inches in diameter. Six to seven inches? Whoa, back outside to check out our modest and slightly weary-looking little clematis. Perhaps our little specimen had missed a few meals somewhere along the way…or more likely missed a drink and a few rays of sunshine.

Sensing my clematis-based shame, the Pender Post Research department jumped into action to determine the range of size to which various clematis flowers aspire. Even the died-in-the-wool gardeners among the researchers were shocked to learn that the clematis flower diameter ranged from the tiny New Zealand dwarf clematis at 2cm. (.75 inches) to 25.4 cm (10 inches) for a clematis lanuginose (yup, that’s a Latin clematis). Almost all clematis are climbers and, according to our determined researchers, some clematis if left unchecked, can grow to 30 feet (9 m) in height. Our intrepid researchers hasten to add (assuming that a group can hasten) that clematis are not destructive to their hosts. As evidence of that fact, they site a photograph of clematis appearing to cascade from the great heights of an evergreen tree. Of course the clematis are actually growing from the ground up but visually, cascading down is the image that imprints. Both the clematis and evergreen host appear healthy and happy with both the arrangement and with the spectacular combo look!

In closing, I would like to thank photographer/landscaper, Jason Edmondson, members of The Pender Post research department, and Clearview Horticultural Products for their assistance and clematis knowledge as they patiently nudged me from status of clematis ignoramus to clematis fan.

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