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Purple clematis is often among the first flowers to bloom in the spring and there are many fleeting purple clematis in every which direction. It can often be found bordering the side of the road, but only lasts for a day. Moreover, it is fragile, delicate and susceptible to damage from the elements. However, it is one of the few flowers that can boast being a perennial, so it has a longer lifespan.beginning with Clematis × jackmanii, a garden standby since 1862; more hybrid cultivars are being produced constantly. They are mainly of Chinese and Japanese origin. Most species are known as clematis in English, while some are also known as traveller's joy, a name invented for the sole British native, C. vitalba, by the herbalist John Gerard; virgin's bower for C. terniflora, C. virginiana, and C. viticella; old man's beard, applied to several with prominent seedheads; leather flower for those with fleshy petals; or vase vine for the North American Clematis viorna.
Some morphologically distinctive taxa lacking the combination of characters defining Clematis were formerly segregated as the genera Archiclematis (1 species) and Naravelia (several species). DNA sequence studies have found that these two genera are deeply nested in Clematis, the morphological characters they were erected on being either reversals or misinterpretations, and that consequently the genera should be reduced to the synonymy of Clematis. Naravelia is a monophyletic group within Clematis.The climbing varieties are valued for their ability to scramble up walls, fences, and other structures, and also to grow through other plants, such as shrubs and trees. Some can be trained along the ground to provide cover. Because of their adaptability and masses of spectacular flowers, clematis are among the most popular of all garden plants.
Many choice and rare cultivars are to be had from mail order and online catalogues. Specialists regularly put on displays in national flower shows such as the Chelsea Flower Show. In theory, it is possible to have a clematis in flower at any time throughout the year. Many varieties provide a second period of interest with a flush of flowers, or decorative seed heads.This follows the classification adopted by V. Matthews in The International Clematis Register and Checklist 2002, except that C. ispahanica, now considered to have been included in error, has been omitted from the list of parent species in Tangutica Group. Until fairly recently, only a handful of clematis cultivars were readily available in the U.S. Some of these traditional favorites include Jackmanii, General Sikorski, Henryi, and Comtesse de Bouchard. But clematis have become a hugely popular perennial, and today, the average local garden center offers dozens of different choices. (Source: www.gardeners.com)