It is not too often that I give a presentation on clematis when the garden is in full swing, but as luck would have it I am headed out to Rockport to talk to a group there and so I have cut some flowers to bring for show and tell
If I were to make arrangements with any of these clematis, I would most definitely cut long stems with multiple blooms but for this talk single flowers will do.
Here is what I cut today:
Ville de Lyon
Recta ‘Serious B;ack’
Purpurea plena elegans
Comtesse de Bouchard
foliage of Mrs. Robert Brydon
foliage of tanguitica Bill McKenzie
seed head from omishiro
and here are a few I like to for their usefulness in vases
Let’s start with Star River. ( Zostarri) This clematis was bred by Wim Snoeijer from Holland. It has lovely two toned violet flowers that are actually quite beautiful from both front and behind, is an integrifolia ( herbaceous) hybrid that does not climb so is a set of long and untangled single stems with multiple flowers at the tips, and blooms easily for months. All of these attributes make it the perfect candidate to cut and arrange with. I adore this clematis in bud and flower both in a vase and out in the garden, it’s only drawback is it really looks awful after the flowers start to go past. They fade to a dreadful color and I immediately deadhead them , but that is in a no way meant to dissuade you from planting it as deadheading is actually good for the plant will stimulate new growth and more flowers.
while it is nice to have lots of big colorful flowers, you need also filler and foliage too and clematis mandshirica is a great one for that. It is also an herbaceous form, so again, very easy to cut longer stems which are act just like baby’s breath filling out between flowers with a goes-with-everything-white froth.
The foliage of both the tanguita group and the herbaceaous heracliefolias could not be more different but both are wonderful to use when cutiing.
The heracleifolias ( like c. stans,c. urticifiolia, and the one pictured her Mrs. Robert Brydon, ) grow upright and errect and the foliage always perfect, never bug eaten or browned in the garden, They are also very large and highly textured, great for flower arranging
The tanguitcas on the other hand are long, ferny and wonderful to drape and let hang, you can see the leaves in the photos above
All of the plants in both these groups are quite large, so you can cut at will and not worry about loosing their presence in the garden.
We are due for another stormy and rainy day, our weather has been perfect for my garden . I am grateful that the sprinkler system is getting a much needed break after the drought last year, although without all the watering I gotta admit I am a little bored.