There are many types of Clematis, with more varieties being bred all the time to develop ever more attractive flowers. Because there are so many to choose from, it is worth looking at different images to decide what you like, when you want the Clematis to flower, and which flower shapes appeal to you. There are Clematis in flower all the year round from Clematis Cirrhosa Freckles, illustrated above center, which is winter flowering through to clematis tangutica 'bill mackenzie' which is late summer flowering and has lovely fluffy seed heads, image above right.
There are 10 different flower shapes in the Clematis group: single large flowers, double large flowers, C, Montana, C. Viticella, saucer shaped, star-shaped, open bell shaped, bell shaped, tulip shaped and tubular.
The size and growth of Clematis varies as well. In the image above left is the lovely C. Crystal fountain, a variety bred for growing in small spaces, patios and containers as it only grows to around 1.8 m with very attractive flowers. Compare to C montana, which is a very vigorous Clematis, and grows 5-14m depending on the conditions.
We classify clematis into three groups:-
Group 1 are the early flowering types C. alpina, C. macropetala which have single, or double bell-shaped flowers and C. montana, with large saucer-shaped flowers and is one of the most popular Clematis to grow and easy. These are all no prune Clematis.
Group 2 are Clematis which flower early to midsummer and sometimes with a second flush mid to late summer. This group of Clematis has upright single, double saucer-shaped flowers and are often very showy, such as the C. Crystal fountain.
Group 3 are the later flowering clematis which have large saucer-shaped flowers in summer and early autumn. Within this group there are also small flowering clematis which a variety of flower shapes, saucer, star-shaped, bell and open bell and also tulip and tubular.
Information on how to plant and grow Clematis.