CLEMATIS CIRRHOSA species and cultivars

Clematis cirrhosa



Clematis cirrhosa is an exquisite, evergreen climber that is native to the the sun-kissed lands of the Mediterranean. It was originally introduced to England from the Balearic Islands (found off the southern coast of Spain) in 1783.

Clematis cirrhosa
There is a specific variety of Clematis cirrhosa that is indigenous to the Balearic islands - Clematis cirrhosa var. balearica. Commonly called the Fern-leaved Clematis, this attractive and valuable species can be found on Majorca, Minorca, Corsica and Sardinia, growing along roadsides and in scrub. This particular variety produces pale yellow, spotted reddish-purple flowers throughout the winter.

Clematis cirrhosa has a habit of throwing out different colour variations in its flowers that can range from pure white or cream to those which are lightly speckled with red inside and occasionally some which are so heavily painted in red that the stain shows through to the backs of the petals.

These variations are clear in the named forms of 'Jingle Bells' (pure white with no spots); 'Wisley Cream' (creamy white, sometimes tinted green); 'Ourika Valley' (a prolific pale yellow); 'Freckles' (cream with bold red markings); 'Lansdowne Gem' (almost completely red); as well as var. balearica (creamy white, with a scattering of dainty reddish-brown speckles).

Clematis cirrhosa
Like all early-flowering clematis, it requires little pruning other than the removal of any dead or damaged growth after flowering. If you are growing it in a northern European climate then you will need to provide a warm, sheltered position to encourage it to flower well. It prefers full sun and will thrive in any fertile, well-drained soil.

When planting pot grown plants, plant with the crown 2–3 inches deeper than the soil surface to encourage shoots to grow from below ground level. In colder, more northern regions you may need to grow Clematis cirrhosa in a container and overwinter in a greenhouse or conservatory

But this isn't just a plant to be appreciated by gardeners, the local wildlife will benefit too! Finches will feed on the seeds themselves, while other birds will use the fluffy seed heads as nesting material in the spring. Perhaps more importantly the flowers provide early season nectar for foraging insects

For related articles click onto the following links:
CLEMATIS CIRRHOSA species and cultivars
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HOW TO PROPAGATE CLEMATIS BY LAYERING
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HOW TO TAKE CUTTINGS FROM CLEMATIS
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THE BLUE CLEMATIS - Clematis x jackmanii
THE EVERGREEN CLEMATIS - Clematis armandii
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THE ORANGE PEEL CLEMATIS - Clematis tangutica
WHY IS MY CLEMATIS NOT FLOWERING?

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