Ground clematis is a herbaceous perennial and a member of the buttercup family, Ranunculaceae, that also includes delphinium, columbine, and anemone.  It is native to eastern, central, and southern Europe where it grows in river valleys, hillsides, scrub and the edges of woodlands.  Although it can be used as climber a if supported, it is usually allowed to crawl on the ground.  Plants have pinnately compound leaves that are divided into 5-9 entire leaflets 1-3″ long.The leaflets are ovate, pointed, and short stalked.  The starry white 3/4″  wide fragrant flowers are carried in large terminal and axillary panicles from late spring to early summer and are followed by silky silvery seedheads.  Ground clematis can be used as a ground cover or allowed to trail over low shrubs.  The genus name, Clematis, comes from the Greek word klemetis meaning climbing plant.  The specific epithet, recta, is the Latin word for upright.  

Type: Herbaceous perennial

Bloom: Starry white, fragrant, 3/4″ wide flowers in terminal and axillary panicles from late spring to early summer

Size: 2-5′ H x 2′ W

Light: Full sun

Soil: Fertile, consistently moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 3-9

Care: Low maintenance

Pests and Diseases: None of significance

Propagation: Seed, cuttings in spring and summer

Companion Plants:Low growing shrubs such as barberry, yaupon holly, and Otto Luyken laurel

Photo Credit:  Kurt Stueber, Wikimedia Commons

By Karen