Ground clematis with its dark-green leaves is like a perennial: it grows to over a metre in summer, flowers on that year’s shoots and dies back in the autumn. The stems are cut down before the new growing season. Ground clematis slowly spreads into a sprawling bush, forming a drift of little white honey-scented flowers, so that by the middle summer months the whole bush is covered with flowers. These are followed by silvery seed heads right up to the onset of winter.
This clematis is common in the forests, roadsides and riverbanks of the eastern parts of North America. It climbs up trees, grows over bushes and fences or – if it has nothing to cling on to – along the ground.
This clematis has no common English name. It comes from Northeast Asia, around the Sea of Okhotsk. Clematis were used to be called forest vines and the clematis ochotensis also grows on the forest floor in its natural range, often climbing round bushes. The variety at Mustila comes from Kamchatka and it climbs 3–4 metres up the trunk of a very old Manchurian Walnut (Juglans mandshurica), flowering well.