Clematis ‘Durandii’ – Ranunculaceae
The generic name is derived from the Greek word klema meaning tendril. The genus Clematis includes over 230 species distributed throughout the temperate regions of the northern and southern hemispheres. They are perennial plants, semi-shrubs or shrubs, often climbers or creepers, with opposite, usually compound leaves. Theare borne singly or in panicles or cymes and have no petals. The sepals are large and brightly coloured, replacing the corolla both in appearance and function. Clematis are readily crossed, and it was in Britain that interest in this genus for breeding purposes was first shown. The first new varieties were bred from Oriental or American species and later ones from Asiatic species, resulting in magnificent, large-flowered forms.
The illustrated `Durandii’ is apparently a hybrid between Clematis integrifolia and C. jackmanii. It is a shrub up to 2 m (6 ft) high with dark, blue-violet flowers, 8 to 12 cm (3 to 5 in) across, with four to six sepals. It tends to be a creeping rather than a climbing plant and therefore needs to be tied to a support. The flowers are good for cutting and are long-lived in the vase. This clematis is very hardy. Like other species and varieties it requires a light, well-drainedfor good growth and an occasional application of feed is recommended. It is important to protect the base of the plant from the direct rays of the sun as it requires a cool root run. This can be done with stones or by planting perennials in front.