I.Cl.S. - Council Members

Linda Beutler, USA©Linda Beutler
Linda Beutler
Sarah Holme, RHS International Clematis Registrar, Great Britain
Sarah Holme
RHS International Clematis Registrar
Great Britain
Jeff Jabco, Past President, USA
Jeff Jabco
Past President
Charlene Janes,  Canada
Charlene Janes
Membership Sectretary
Lars Jensen, Denmark
Lars Jensen
Ingrid Kastell, Sweden
Ingrid Kastell
Peter Keeping,  Canada
Peter Keeping
Heidrun Kläser,  Germany
Heidrun Kläser
Szczepan Marczyñski,  Poland
Szczepan Marczyñski
Mike MIller, USA
Mike MIller
Laura Watson, Email Manager, USA
Laura Watson
Email Manager

Council Members full addresses are sent to Members every year.

Linda Beutler, USA

Linda Beutler, Past President, USA©Linda BeutlerLinda Beutler is a fearless gardener who grows a great number of plants on a simple, flat 50 x 100 foot city lot in the Sellwood neighborhood of Portland, Oregon. She was a professional florist for 18 years, and her first love in her own garden was growing flowers and foliage for cutting. That focus started changing 14 years ago, when Linda purchased her first clematis as a misnamed plant. Her personal collection now numbers over 275 separate species and cultivars, grown in many ways. In addition to clematis she collects hardy geraniums, old garden roses (over 90), alliums, hydrangeas, hardy fuchsias and she's never met a corydalis or thalictrum she didn't like.

Linda is a member of numerous gardening organizations (as most gardeners are) including the Ranunculaceae Society, American Hemerocallis Society, North American Lily Society, Pacific Northwest Peony Society, and Oregon State University Master Gardeners. She served eight years on the Board of the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon (HPSO), and was the Director in charge of the famous HPSO plant sale for eight years, from 1993 through 2001. Linda is a founding member of both the Pacific Northwest Clematis Society (1999), and the Friends of the Rogerson Clematis Collection (2003). She volunteers at the collection weekly. She is newly appointed to the governing council of the International Clematis Society.

In addition to her floral career, Linda Beutler is the instructor of cut flower growing ("The Flower Arranger's Garden I & II"), as well as the herbaceous perennials class for the horticulture department at Clackamas Community College. She lectures nationally on several gardening topics, and is a garden writer for both local and national publications, including dig, Fine Gardening, Pacific Horticulture, and Birdwatcher's Digest. With Maurice Horn (co-owner of Joy Creek Nursery), Linda co-authored the chapter on growing clematis in North America for Dr. Mary Toomey's book The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Clematis (Timber Press, 2001). Linda has now written her own book, Gardening with Clematis, which debuted for Timber Press in September 2004. It is the first major book about clematis written by a North American for North American gardeners since 1935. Boy, have things changed!

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Sarah Holme, RHS International Clematis Registrar, Great Britain

Sarah Holme, RHS International Clematis Registrar, UK

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Jeff Jabco, Past President, USA

Jeff Jabco, PAst President, USA Jeff Jabco is the Director of Grounds and Coordinator of Horticulture for the Scott Arboretum at Swarthmore College, where he has worked since 1990. In his role, Jeff oversees the gardeners, the College's 400 acres, and the maintenance and development of its plant collections, gardens, and natural areas. Jeff is co-founder and vice president of the Mid-Atlantic Peony Society. He is an instructor at Longwood Gardens, where he teaches the Certificate in Ornamental Plants program, courses in landscape design and construction, and the two-year Longwood Professional Gardener program. He has written for Fine Gardening magazine; Green Scene, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society's magazine; American Nurseryman; and The Hybrid, the quarterly publication of the Scott Arboretum; and the International Clematis Society's journal. He also serves on the board of The International Clematis Society.

He began teaching in Longwood's Continuing Education program in 1985 and has taught in the Professional Gardener training program since 1998. Jeff was named Teacher of the Year in 2009 by the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture. He was awarded the Rutgers Gardens Hamilton Award in 2017. The Hamilton Award recognizes "an unsung hero, a quiet leader, or patient mentor in the field of horticulture".

In 2014, Jeff initiated a trial of over 50 cultivars of clematis that were not readily available in the United States. The trial sites are located mainly in southeastern Pennsylvania, USA, and consist of public and private gardens. The goal of the trial is to evaluate performance of these plants and to create a market for the outstanding performers.

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Charlene James, Membership Scretary, Canada

Charlene James, Membership Scretary, Canada

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Lars Jensen, Denmark

Lars Jensen, Denmark "My name is Lars Jensen. I was born in 1965 and live in Denmark, married to Jette and together we have a son. I am a trained baker and have never done anything else.  

My interest in clematis started in 2008 when I was with Jette at nursery school, where I bought 3 clematis, 'Arabella', 'Rouge Cardinal' and 'Miss Bateman'. This was the start of an obsession and since then many more have been added. Today we have a garden which is 2500 m2. with approx. 600 different clematis, trees and many other plants.

My great interest is to collect seeds and get them to germinate and become, perhaps, an exciting clematis. My first clematis from seed is named koreana 'Jette'. My favorites are 'Princess Alexandra', 'Ton Hannink', 'Scented Clem', atragene 'Imke', montana 'Van Gogh', 'Utopia', 'Sweet Summer Love' and of course koreana 'Jette'.

Our garden is called Clematisbageren because I am the baker with a passion for clematis. I have no botanical education, all the knowledge I have is self-taught.

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Ingrid Kastell, Sweden

"I live in Västerås, Sweden, a city west of Stockholm, and I work as an engineer with district heating and cooling.

One of my biggest interest is - and has always been - flowers, plants and gardening. As a little girl, my window-sill was completely full of indoor plants but nowadays the plants I am interested in have grown up, just like me. Now I am more interested in bigger plants such as trees, bushes, conifers, perennials and, of course, clematis. They all have in common that they fit in my passion for being outside working in the garden.

Our garden is situated in a slope and has too many big trees. The soil is full of stones - both small and very big ones - and the garden is also very dry so it's a hard work to dig, but fortunately my husband is very helpful.

I hope I can use my Council membership to try to raise awareness and increase the interest among the Swedish members to enjoy the activities in the I.Cl.S.

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Peter Keeping, Canada

Peter Keeping, CanadaPeter was born in Rochester, Kent, England, moved to Fulham in 1937 where he lived through the war. He worked for Wills and Seagar in Knightsbridge - Florists to Her Majesty. He emigrated to Canada in 1957 with his family. He started a horse ranch and farmed 1500 acres until 1971 when the farm was sold. Peter moved to Grand Valley in Ontario and then to Scarborough in 1980.

He started gardening with Clematis in 1986 when most of the children had left home. It was a large garden. He moved to a 1/2 acre property in Bowmanville, Ontario in November 2000, where he and his partner Sheila, had to start the garden from scratch.

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Heidrun Kläser, Germany

Heidrun Kläser Germany"I was born in December 1960 in Aachen, a town in West Germany, close to the borders of Belgium and the Netherlands. My interest in gardening and horticulture started very early, when I helped my grandparents in their allotment, growing fruits, vegetables and cut flowers.

My career as a professional gardener started in 1980 with an apprenticeship in a tree nursery. During those two years my real love for plants was born. Afterwards I worked for a few years in different tree and perennial nurseries in Germany and the Netherlands, where I visited the display garden in Boskoop for a few times and found some clematis growing there. I liked them very much and my special interest for that plant was born.

Later I studied horticulture at the Leibniz University in Hannover, to learn more about plant production and economics. Then I had a large balcony and started to grow a few clematis in pots. In about 1998 I got in touch with a few members of the I.Cl.S. and joined the society, because I wanted to learn more about clematis.

Next to plants my other main interests are reading, travelling, cooking, painting and learning new things. So I love to join the conferences of the society, because I can combine many of my interests, such as learning more about clematis, meeting nice people from all over the world (many European countries, the U.S.A., Canada, Japan, China and other countries) and seeing new gardens, countries and other things all over the world. I enjoy the annual meetings very much, because I've made some friends there and always look forward to seeing them again and to meeting new people. And by the way: I can practise my English.

For the last eight years I have worked as a consultant for garden centers. I visit the owner in his garden center and advise him how he can improve his location. Because I have to travel a lot I'm quite often far away from home. Therefore I don't have a garden myself. I have a large balcony, where I grow different plants in pots, including a few clematis. In the garden, that belongs to the house, in which I rent a flat, I have also planted a few clematis. I try to interest other people like my family and friends in clematis and have planted some varieties in their gardens, so others can see how beautiful and varied clematis can be."

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Szczepan Marczyñski, Poland

Szczepan Marczyñski, PolandSzczepan Marczyñski graduated from the Horticulture Faculty at the Warsaw Agricultural University (SGGW) in 1969 and received a doctoral degree in 1973; he completed his post doctorate studies at Cornell University, N.Y., U.S.A. (1977-78). In 1987 - 1988 he spent 8 months at the Research Station for Nursery Stock in Boskoop, Holland.

From 1970 to mid-nineties he worked as a researcher and lecturer at the Warsaw Agricultural University in Poland. As an author or a contributor he has published 15 scientific papers, 4 books and over 100 extension and popular articles. He gave several dozen lectures and talks in Poland and in the United States, Canada, China, the Netherlands, Germany, Great Britain, the Czech Republic, France and Hungary.

In 1988, together with MSc. Władysław Piotrowski, he established a clematis nursery, which is now located in Pruszków (Poland) “Clematis Source Good Climbers”. In search of new plants has visited nearly all European countries as well as the U.S.A., Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and China. He has breaded and introduced to the marked more than 50 varieties of Clematis and nine varieties of other climbers. Some of them win prizes at international exhibitions and trials in Poland and abroad. Member of the International Plant Propagators' Society, the International Clematis Society (its President in 2004-2008), the British Clematis Society and the Polish Nurserymen Association (the Chairman in 1997-2000 and in 2009-2012) and an honorary member of the Polish Dendrology Society and Polish Association of Garden Centers.

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Mike Miller, Seed Exchange Administrator and Co-Ordinator, USA, Co-opted

Mike MIller, USAMike Miller, USA, our Seed Exchange Administrator and Co-Ordinator, was co-opted to Council at the Zoom Council Meeting in August 2023, under the powers of the Council to co-opt up to two members independently of a Constitutional General Meeting.

Mike has recently retired and hopes to be able to spend more time working for the Society As well as running the Seed Exchange, Mike has been working on the new web site for the Society and has also taken over posting on the Society’s Instagram account.

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Laura Watson, Email Manager, USA

Laura Watson, Email Manager,
  USA"Gardens have always played an important role in my life. My very earliest memory, at age two, is sitting in a neighbor's strawberry patch, enjoying the warmth of the sun on my skin, the earthy smell of the damp ground, and the glorious taste of strawberries in my mouth! I've been gardening ever since.

My love for clematis was born when I gardened in Boston in the 1990s. My garden got so full of plants that I could no longer visit nurseries — horrors! Fortunately, I stumbled upon Barry Fretwell's book Clematis as Companion Plants and realized I was not making adequate use of vertical space. I was off to the nurseries again until 50 clematis grew everywhere in my garden.

In 2004, I left Boston for the gardening mecca of Seattle and started planting clematis right away. In 2009, I discovered the International Clematis Society (I.Cl.S.) and joined, only to learn that the 2010 International Clematis Conference would be held the following summer in Portland, Oregon — a mere three hours' drive away! I signed up immediately, then spent several months worrying that I would not fit in with all the movers and shakers of the clematis world. Fortunately, I was warmly welcomed by everyone, but most especially by Jan and Marie-Louise van Kuijk from The Netherlands and Gisela and Walter Stäbler from Germany. Attending the annual conferences, being a member of I.Cl.S. and other clematis societies, and the friendships I have gained continually expand my clematis knowledge.

Workwise, I'm retired now for the second time after working over forty years doing administrative and editorial work for Boston University, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, a Seattle yoga center, and PlantAmnesty, a horticultural nonprofit organization also in Seattle.

My clematis articles have been published in the Journal of the International Clematis Society and the PlantAmnesty Newsletter. You can visit my clematis blog at

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@ K.Woolfenden

All information contained at this site is personal to Ken Woolfenden and
does not represent the official view of the International Clematis Society.