Clematis potaninii var. fargesii Franch.
C. Clematis potaninii var. fargesii Franch.©Ton Hannink

Clematis of the Month for July 2010

Section: Clematis
Subsection: Potaninianae
Distribution: China: N. Sichuan, Gansu
Flowering: June-October
Habitat: Climbing over bushes in meadows in western locations
First Recorded: H. Handel-Mazzetti in Acta Horti Gotoburgensis 13:211, 1939
First Discovered: By Franchet

C. potaninii var. fargesii Franch.©Ton Hannink The flowers of Clematis potaninii var. fargesii are white, between 4-4.5 cm in diameter. The sepals are not completely flat but stand up a little. The anthers are yellow and this gives the flowers a special look. Flower normally have 6 sepals but sometimes they can have 5 or 7. The flowers are similar to the flowers of blackberries and grow in clusters, with usually at least 5 flowers together.

Flowers appear from June right the way through to the end of October. Throughout the whole summer the plant has a lot of flowers and once they are gone, the plant is full of seed heads.

The stems grow to 2-5 meters and therefore the plant needs sufficient space where it can grow. Place the plant at a sunny spot and you will have a lot of flowers. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It is a species without growing difficulties or problems, inherently it is very healthy.

C. potaninii var. fargesii Franch.©Ton HanninkThe plant can be used in a border or climbing in a small tree or shrub. A combination with a shrub or tree which has flowers in spring is the best planting combination so that it looks as if the shrub or tree flowers twice. The light green color of the leaves can give a good contrast with the leaves of the shrub or tree.

Pruning is not needed but if you prune the plant then you get less flowers and they will appear later. Prune only if the plant is too large. If you prune then you must cut the stem after the third node.

C. potaninii var. fargesii Franch.©Ton HanninkPropagation from seeds is very easy because the seeds germinate easily and after only 3 months. The young plants even have flowers in the first year. Cuttings can be made from stems provided they are not too young and give good results.

This species is a very useful Clematis in the garden because it gives a lot of flowers, is not difficult and has no illnesses.

Ton Hannink Ton Hannink

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