Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Renegade Clematis

As I was doing the breakfast dishes and looking out my kitchen window this morning, I noticed this lone bloom in the backyard. From a distance I thought it was a cosmos, maybe the remains of a pot that I had tossed in the back garden?  It was so funny to see this spot of color in the back. Well, I got my shoes on and grabbed my camera, and when I got out there I realized it was a clematis in bloom! How strange is that, this is a clematis that blooms in the spring, the variety 'Ernest Markham.' Here it is just beginning to bloom on May 19 of this year.

Clematis and Wild Rose

I really don't have a lot of luck with clematis, but I keep trying. Mine seem to look great in the spring, bloom moderately, and then just kind of die. But they always come back the next year. They might have a disease called clematis wilt. I think I have a white clematis, too, called 'Henryi,' that occasionally makes an appearance--these are both clematis that I have probably had for 15 years.  Below is a 'Nelly Moser' that I got this year at Black Creek Nursery in Lancaster, PA. It actually had a few blooms this summer, unusual for the first year, so I'm hoping that's a good sign.

'Nelly Moser'

And then of course there is my out of control autumn clematis.  I have a little too much luck with this one. Some people call it invasive and I am almost in that camp.  It is pretty, though, when it is blooming, and it does a good job of covering the gate and fence.

Autumn Clematis

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