Clematis pitcheri (Purple Clematis)
Also known as Purple Leatherflower, Bluebill, Pitcher’s Clematis.
Purple Clematis is an herbaceous, perennial, twining vine that reaches approximately 10+ feet in length. It is a delicate vine that grows in moist woods, forest margins and stream banks.
Its stems are quite brittle, and break easily if handled. Purple Clematis does well on a trellis or can also twine through nearby shrubs for support, or simply be allowed to ramble across the ground.
Its flowers are nodding, bell-shaped that range in color from purple to blue. The plant is fairly heat and drought-tolerant. This clematis blooms on new growth. The seeds are held in clusters and mature from light green or dark red to dark brown. They have slightly hairy tails that give the seedhead a spider-like appearance. The seedheads can persist into winter. The flowers are mainly visited by bumblebees.
Purple Clematis is best grown in evenly moist, well-draining soils in full sun to part shade. As is the case with a lot of vines, it prefers when the roots are in cool shade and the foliage is in the sun. Responds to regular watering, but will tolerate periods where it does not get consistent moisture. It is tolerant of a wide range of soil types, including rocky and sandy soils, as long as adequate moisture and drainage is provided. This is the most cold hardy of Texas's native clematis, although its stems will die back each year, and return in the spring.
AT A GLANCE
|Sun exposure||Sun to part shade
|Bloom color||Purple to dark red
|Mature height||10+ ft
|Mature width||2-3 ft
|Present in state|
|Present in county and native|
|Native to North America, but adventive & escaped in state|
|Not present in state|
|Present and rare, native in county|
|Previously present, now extinct|
|Questionable presence (cross-hatched, regardless of color)|