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Gardening in the Rainy Zone.
CURLY CLEMATIS, MARSH CLEMATIS, BLUE JASMINE, SWAMP LEATHER FLOWER, LEATHER FLOWER
Pronounced: KLEM-uh-tiss KRISP-uh
Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennesse, Texas and Virginia.
Sunset zones: A2, A3, 2-11, 14-24.
USDA zones: 5-11.
Heat zones: 9-6.
Height: 6-8 feet (2.5 m).
Width: 3 feet (1 m).
Midsummer to autumn.
Single, fragrant, nodding, bell-shaped flowers, with a white base and 4 reflexed sepals that have wavy margins of varying colors of violet, purple, pale lavender to pale blue, and sometimes two-toned, with yellow to pale green stamens.
Each mid green leaf has serrated margins and is arranged as nine leaflets on a stem.
Fertile, moist, humus rich, neutral to acidic soil.
Mulch well with composted manure or compost. Feed once a month with a complete organic fertilizer during the growing season.
Recommendations* say the best plants come from seed.
Layer branches in late winter.
Basal and softwood cuttings in spring.
Division in spring.
Semi-ripe cuttings in early summer.
In winter, prune the stems down to 6 inches.
Rainy Side Notes
I believe that Clematis crispa, with its scented flowers, should have been used more in early breeding work.
~Raymond J. Evison
The Delicate stems of this vine hold the utterly charming, bell-shaped, reflexed petals that have variable colors in the wild. You can train this vine to be a shrub, which helps protect its delicate stems. This has a long bloom time, from summer to fall in cold climates, and from late spring into fall in mild winter climates.
This southern native charmer passed its sweet tangerine-like fragrance on to the vine's progeny, C. 'Betty Corning'. Two of its common names—marsh clematis and swamp leather flower—is a testament to where it grows in its native habitats; it is the only clematis that can take wet soil.
Its epithet, crispa comes from the sepal’s wavy or crisped margin. In Illinois where they commonly call it blue jasmine, it’s an endangered species, and in Kentucky where they commonly call it blue jasmine leather-flower, it’s a threatened species.
Photographed at Joy Creek Nursery.
*Mary Toomey and Everett Leeds An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Clematis, Page 64.