Data specific to Clematis (Edit)
Country of Origin: United States
Growing Zones: USDA Zone 3
USDA Zone 4
USDA Zone 5
USDA Zone 6
USDA Zone 7
USDA Zone 8
USDA Zone 9
Typical Plant Size: Over 15 feet
Pruning Group: Group 3 - Hard pruning recommended in early spring
Bloom Diameter: Very Small - 2 inches or smaller (<5 cm)
Bloom Color (Tepals): White/Cream/Silver hue
Center Color (Anthers): Cream/White anthers
Other: Filaments starts out green and fade to cream
Bloom Shape: Single
Preferred Light: Tolerates partial shade
Tolerates full sun
Moisture Requirements: Average moisture requirements
Requires consistently moist soil
Additional Information: Flowers are fragrant
Very attractive seedheads

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Vine
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Wet Mesic
Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Slightly alkaline (7.4 – 7.8)
Moderately alkaline (7.9 – 8.4)
Plant Height: 20 feet
Leaves: Deciduous
Fruit: Showy
Fruiting Time: Fall
Flowers: Showy
Fragrant
Flower Color: White
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Summer
Late summer or early fall
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Flood Resistant
Drought tolerant
Propagation: Seeds: Stratify seeds: 1 month cold moist treatment
Suitable for wintersowing
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Layering
Pollinators: Wasps
Flies
Bees
Containers: Not suitable for containers
Miscellaneous: Dioecious

Image
Common names
  • American Virgin's Bower
  • Clematis
  • Devil's Darning Needle

Photo Gallery
Location: my garden in Dawsonville, GA (zone 7b north Geogia mountains)
Date: 2022-10-25
Location: my garden in Dawsonville, GA (zone 7b north Geogia mountains)
Date: 2022-10-25
Location: In my garden in Kalama, Wa.
Date: 2006-07-09
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: my garden in Dawsonville, GA (zone 7b north Geogia mountains)
Date: 2022-10-25
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Lilburn, GA
Date: 2020-09-27
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Date: 2006-09-02
Credit  Audrey
Location: Frederick, MD
Date: 2009-08-19
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana
Date: 2011-10-07
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana - Zone 5b
Date: 2012-08-20
Location: full sun - zone 7
Date: 2019-08-17

Photo courtesy of: Tom Potterfield

Date: 2010-08-02
Credit Malcolm Manners
Location: Percy Warner Park, Nashville, TN
Date: 2004-07-20
Photo by Steven J. Baskauf ( http://bioimages.vanderbilt.edu/)

Photo Courtesy of Prairie Nursery. Used with Permission
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Date: 2011-08-16
foliage and flowers

Date: August
credit: John Cameron
Location: McEwen TN
Date: 2014-08-14
Location: McEwen TN
Date: 2014-08-14
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana
Date: 2011-10-07
Uncultivated specimen.
Location: Skaneateles Conservation Area
photo credit: R. A. Nonenmacher
Location: Skaneateles Conservation Area
photo credit: R. A. Nonenmacher
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana - Zone 5b
Date: 2012-08-20
Location: Percy Warner Park, Nashville, TN
Date: 2003-10-11
Steven J. Baskauf http://bioimages.vanderbilt.edu/
Location: Virginia
Date: 2012-08-22
Location: Virginia
Date: 2012-08-22
Location: Yard, near Central Iowa
Date: 2015-08-19
Leaves with one bud beginning to form.
Location: Fairfax, VA | August, 2022
Date: 2022-08-14

Date: c. 1938
photo from the 1938 catalog, James I. George & Son, Fairport, New
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Master bedroom garden.
Date: 2014-08-02
Location: Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois
Date: 2014-08-13
vine covering trellis
Location: Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Date: 2016-09-05
vine twining on Sweetbay Magnolia
Location: Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Date: 2014-08-02
white flowers and leaves
Location: Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Date: 2014-09-30
fuzzy, hairy, gray achene fruit clusters
Location: Lucketts, Loudoun County, Virginia
Date: 2016-04-02
Emerging spring growth

Photo courtesy of: Tom Potterfield
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana
Date: 2011-10-07
Leaves are opposite.

Date: 2007-08-04
Credit SB Johnny

This one needs LOTS of room. Blooms ~3 to 4 weeks earlier than Sw
Location: Natural Area in Northeastern Indiana - Zone 5b
Date: 2012-08-19

Photo by user SB_Johnny, Wikipedia

Photo Courtesy of Prairie Nursery. Used with Permission
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: Neenah, Wisconsin (Wild Ones Headquarters)
Date: mid-August 2012
vine in bloom on fence
Location: Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Date: 2016-08-05
vine on Sweetbay Magnolia at deck
Location: Blinky Lee Land Preserve in southeast PA
Date: 2015-08-15
wild vine on woody plants
This plant is tagged in:
Image Image

Comments:
  • Posted by goldfinch4 (Ripon, Wisconsin) on Oct 30, 2011 1:51 PM concerning plant:
    Often confused with sweet autumn clematis (Clematis terniflora or Clematis paniculata). The two vines can be distinguished by their leaves; on a virgin's bower, almost all leaves are have jagged teeth. Sweet autumn clematis has rounded leaves, which are mostly untoothed. Part of the Ranunculaceae (Buttercup) Family. Flowers have no fragrance. All parts of this plant are poisonous to humans. Severe pain in mouth if eaten; skin irritation if touched or inhaled. Symptoms include burning sensation of mouth and mouth ulcers. Skin redness and burning sensation is minor and lasts only a few minutes.
  • Posted by mellielong (Lutz, Florida - Zone 9b) on Apr 17, 2015 10:34 PM concerning plant:
    The book "How to Know the Wildflowers" (1922) by Mrs William Starr Dana gives the common names of "Traveller's Joy" and "Virgin's Bower". The author states that the plant blooms in July and August, while "later in the year the seeds with their silvery plumes give a feathery effect." She also makes note of experiments Darwin conducted with Clematis. Whether she is referring to this particular species or the whole genus is unknown, but she lists it under this species. Anyway, she states that Darwin was conducting experiments regarding the movements of the young shoots of the plant. He discovered that "one revolved, describing a broad oval, in five hours, thirty minutes; and another in six hours, twelve minutes; they follow the course of the sun."
  • Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Feb 4, 2018 5:52 PM concerning plant:
    The American Virginsbower grows in various sites from swamp and river banks to forest edges to fields to cliffs from Nova Scotia and southeast Canada down to northern Florida to eastern Texas to central Nebraska into southern Manitoba and back around the Great Lakes. I bought one plant in a small container sent by mail from Prairie Nursery in central Wisconsin and planted it where it grows up on my deck rails and on the Sweetbay Magnolia. It is fast growing of up to 20 feet in one year, though mine took a few years to get big. The white flowers of mine have a little bit of a sweet fragrance. This Clematis species is not sold by most garden centers or nurseries, where the colourful large-flowered cultivars are well-known and used instead. Native nurseries, specialty nurseries, and a few large, diverse nurseries sell some. It is not a common plant in gardens and landscapes. I've only seen some wild vines twice at two land preserves in southeast PA. The leaves are trifoliate compound leaves with some large teeth on margins. This species is dioecious and I have a female that still bears some hairy seed that might not be fertile. I have not seen any babies from seed, but the vine does do some ground suckering. The male plants have brighter white, slightly showier flowers. (I like this clematis better than the Sweetautumn Clematis from Japan that is very rampant growing and makes babies all over the place.)
  • Posted by Chillybean (Iowa - Zone 5a) on Aug 9, 2015 12:24 PM concerning plant:
    This is a US native vine that can grow in sunny or part sun locations. For the plant to go to seed, you need both male and female plants. This is what I consider the plant's glory, those amazing seed heads! We have eight of these in hopes there will be at least one of each gender. This we will find out the first time they flower.

    We dug up an alien clematis to make room for one pair. Two were put in as dormant roots last fall; one did not make it. I ordered seven more plants. Most are in part shade, but a couple are along a fence line that gets sun all day. They started out slow this spring, but then they really took off as the season progressed.

    Unlike alien Clematis, which the rabbits have eaten down to the ground, this is poisonous to mammals. I really do not like having to chicken wire plants to keep the rabbits out. The only feeders so far, are whatever insects nibble on leaves and there is no heavy infestation.

    Edited to add: How can I forget the other common names I appreciate more than these listed on this page? Old Man's Beard (Admittedly, which is used for other plants as well.) and Prairie Smoke on a Rope.
  • Posted by goldfinch4 (Ripon, Wisconsin) on Feb 22, 2012 8:04 AM concerning plant:
    Vigorous plant, best suited for woodland or natural gardens.
  • Posted by HollyAnnS (South Central Pa) on Aug 20, 2013 6:28 AM concerning plant:
    A very lovely addition to my Zone 6 gardens. Adds wonderful late summer color and is attractive to pollinators. Needs plenty of room to grow, either on a large trellis or tumbling over a large bush.
Plant Events from our members
Catmint20906 On September 13, 2015 Bloomed
Catmint20906 On November 11, 2014 Seeds sown
dnrevel On January 11, 2021 Seeds sown
Winter Sowed Jan 10, 2021. DnD Seed Swap.
» Post your own event for this plant

Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Is that a shade plant? (Clematis virginiana) by CDsSister Sep 1, 2012 10:36 AM 3

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