Botanical: Clematis maximowiaziana 'Paniculata'
Common: Clematis, sweet autumn virginsbower
General Characteristics: Clematis may be planted and trained to cover walls, trellis, posts, fences, arbors or to cover rocky sites. It will need support. Prefers a rich, well-drained soil with a pH of 5.6-6.5. Clematis do best in neutral or slightly alkaline soils, but they are somewhat adaptable. If you have very acid soil, try to add some calcium when you plant. If you want to grow really good clematis you should incorporate a little lime in the planting holes. Roots should be planted in a cool moist environment, while the vine itself should be in the sun. Root area should be protected. They require 1" of water a week. 'Sweet Autumn Clematis' blooms on current season's wood. this fast growing vine will top 20' in one season. It is unusually late blooming for a Clematis, bearing clouds of fragrant, 1', star-shaped, white flowers late Summer into Fall. The sweet vanilla fragrance is wonderful & not overpowering, bringing back the sweet scents of Spring. After the flowers fade, silvery, plume-like seed heads decorate the vine.
It's easily and best pruned in late Spring by cutting last year's stems 6-12" above the ground. Don't be alarmed by this drastic pruning – it's so vigorous that by mid-season it will be covering the fence or trellis again. Plant in a sunny, well drained location where its roots can be shaded and cool (a thick layer of mulch works fine). Deciduous to semi-deciduous.
Use: Trellises, arbors, posts, fences. Can also be allowed to sprawl along the ground as a dense ground cover to hide old tree stumps or other eyesores. Can also be grown through large shrubs, but growth must be monitored to insure that the shrub is not overwhelmed.