The Great Wall of Purple

The Jackman Clematis (Clematis x jackmanii) reached its peak on Sunday. I can tell because that’s when the first purple petals dropped to the ground. As I mentioned in an earlier post, this year we extended the trellis all the way up to the rain gutters, and the Jackman Clematis took full advantage of the new space for climbing.


It is not an exaggeration to say that while in bloom this plant has become a neighborhood landmark – this year even more so than in the past.



Cars actually do stop in the street in front of our house. Fortunately, it is not a busy street. Passing strangers ask about our secret Clematis-growing technique (I wish we had one).


I myself find the mass of rich purple flowers more than a little mesmerizing.

A man and his Clematis.


Just to be clear on the question of scale, I am just under 6′ tall. The Clematis is more than double that.


Here’s a view from the side. The Jackman Clematis has filled both sides of the trellis with blooms where it has been allowed to do so.



Looking upward.



And a view from the sidewalk in front of the house.

Just recently I finished reading The Plant Lover’s Guide to Clematis, by Linda Beutler. An excellent book, and I’ll post a review of it soon. One thing I learned is that cutting back this Clematis by half after it is done blooming will get you a second flush of blooms in late summer or early fall. Can’t wait to see if it works.



71 Comments on “The Great Wall of Purple

  1. Super jealous of this mass of purple! Wow doesn’t seem to cover it. Outstanding – will be interested in seeing if cutting it back will bring a second flush of blooms.

  2. I adore this great wall of purple. Good name for it too! My Clematis is also this deep purple color, and it will be so fun to see if the second blooming becomes reality!! Thanks for the tip!!

  3. It is common in the UK to cut them back and they do usually flower again maybe not quite so exuberantly as yours is now. What a wonderful sight!

  4. Freakin awesome!!!!! It’s a rock star of a show. just planted my first serious clematis “Mrs robert brydon” iv had others that were hand me downs never had a place for them but this one I picked just for the place!!!

  5. Wow, it really is fabulous. No wonder people stop their cars in the street to have a good look!

    • Honestly, I can’t suggest anything that isn’t commonly suggested in magazines. I think this Clematis likes alkaline soil, which we have. Also growing on a west-facing brick wall, with warm afternoon sun magnified by the heated bricks. Also it’s right by the outdoor water faucet so it gets extra drinks. And I give it a generous helping of compost every year.

  6. It is truly amazing. I also have a Jackmanni where the trellis is way too short. I will try to extend it like you did, because it really looks much better, than when it has folded back on itself.

  7. As we would say in Maine, that is some wall of purple. Magnificent!

  8. Wow, you should be on the local news with that display! Absolutely gorgeous! Well done! 🙂

  9. Now that is impressive! I like the photo of you standing next to the trellis–great smile, and it gives perspective on how large/tall the vines have grown.

  10. Hello Jason, that really is stunning and I’m just speechless. The picture of you proudly showing it off gives a sense of scale and it looks so striking against the white of the house. I’m surprised you don’t have rows of rear-ended cars on your road with a display like that!

  11. What a stunning display the Clematis has made. It deserve a post of its own, and has a cheery affect on me in the middle of winter!

  12. That is really impressive. I wish I had one clematis producing half the blooms yours puts out.

  13. Your clematis posts always give me a bad case of clematis envy! I don’t seem to be able to provide clematis with the right conditions to make it truly happy; I’m thrilled to have four flowers open simultaneously. 😐

  14. Yikes. It’s absolutely stunning. Please do keep us informed on if you get a second bloom.

  15. That’s a showstopper for sure. Now I am excited to see what the Clematis that I adopted from the plant orphanage at work will do. If it is even a fraction as vigorous as yours, I will have to rethink its support system.

  16. Now that is something to shout about!!! Magnificent! Just love the man and his clematis shot!xxx

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