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Clematis Integrifolia

A Beginner’s Guide to Growing Clematis Integrifolia


The Clematis integrifolia is a type of plant that does best in zones three to seven.  As a perennial, this plant would only be planted once and then each year, it would come back to produce gorgeous blooms and foliage.  Native to the state of Missouri, the plant can grow up to three feet tall and spread out to about three feet, making it a beautiful addition around decks and patios.

The Clematis integrifolia blooms from May to September, providing gorgeous blue flowers.  While this plant does well in partial shade, it also loves being in full sunlight.  It is important that the soil be fertile and that you keep it moist but not overwatered.  Typically, placed in rich soil and then surrounded by mulch is the best option to keep the roots moist and cool.

The Clematis integrifolia can also be found along streams, in shrub areas, and even meadows in various parts of China and Russia, and in central Europe.  Unlike some of the other Clematis plants, this one does not climb but its density and blooms make it a wonderful addition.  As mentioned, most of the flowers are blue although some will be more of a violet color but all are shaped like a bell, giving the plant a distinct appearance.

The flowers are usually around two inches long, growing on a thin stalk that grows to about eight inches.  You will also find that the Clematis integrifolia often ends up with twisted sepals and beautiful green leaves that are usually five inches long.  The combination is a stunning plant, which can be grown in many areas around the home, creating a wonderful visual effect.

When the Clematis integrifolia is young, it needs extra good fertilizer.  For this, the fertilizer should have a higher level of phosphorus than it would at maturity to help with root development.  Then once the plant has reached maturity, you can bring the level of phosphorus down.  Typically, this type of plant would need to be re-fertilized every two to three years unlike other perennials that usually do best with annual fertilization.

It is also important that the Clematis integrifolia be pruned, which means to thin out or pinch off parts of the plant to encourage better growth and blooms.  When pinching, you would remove the tips of the stems on a young plant to help encourage new branches to grow.  When thinning out, entire branches attached to the trunk would be removed.  This is usually done when the plant becomes overly dense and is not getting enough light and ventilation.

The Clematis integrifolia also needs to be sheared on occasion, which involves using hand or electric shears to level off the top.  While this is not done to promote better growth, it does allow you to shape the plant or simply keep it looking uniform and aesthetically pleasing.  Finally, removing old or dead branches is imperative for the overall health of the Clematis integrifolia.  When doing this, just be sure that you never remove any more than one-third of the plant.



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