2008-09-16

Western White Clematis, documents relating to

The USDA Plants profile for Clematis ligusticifolia Nutt. western white clematis makes for interesting reading.

Basically, they agree with my observations. Clematis, if given proper soil, etc., will grow mondo tap roots, stems up to 20 meters in length, meter's are a bit longer than a yard, I haven't been exaggerating their length, with a winter die-back maintenance of up to 5 meters, will grow up fences if given the chance [good for catching soil and tumbleweeds, so they say], will propagate from a double leaf & stem softwood section as little as 1½" long, have a successful propagation rate from hardwood sections of similar size of 76% given some slight encouragement, but don't do anywhere so well given thin soil; they really do need that deep taproot. Oh, and damage to the crown of the taproot, the bulgy whorl at the surface, doesn't phase them that much, two years seems indicated to eradicate 'cause they can grow back from the roots.

They can make do with as little as 7" of rain annually. Natively found in semi-arid grasslands and plateaus across the Trans-Rockie Mountain West.

Don't do too well reproducing by seed, the fluffy pods make it tough for them to reach the ground, have to get the fluff shredded apart; then again, I suspect small rodents would find the fluff right nice for nesting, which would place the seeds where they want to be, thank you very much. Given one of their uses listed is providing shelter to small rodents, I may be a bit brighter than they are, or at least more in tune with my inner mouse. Also... I noticed a number of times when excavating Clematis that the ground would suddenly feel like I'd stumbled upon a burrow, it'd feel like a hollow existed a couple inches below the surface, just right for ... small rodents ... me thinks I am brighter than some of these agriculture types!

And what if they were out in those semi-arid areas, the fluff would catch dust easily, wouldn't it? Blow a ways, get covered in dust, settle down, have dust pile against it, come time to germinate... No, I think they aren't doing a good job of analyzing this, these plants are well adapted to their native range.

Pretty impressive plants, a Worthy Opponent, if you will. And I can see how they turn people to their side, they are pretty...

Nay! Get thee behind me, Satan! Never shall I fall astray, saying, 'Oh, just this small section, it won't do any harm.' Next thing you knew I'd be ordering Scotch Bloom, or Kudzu, or Queen Anne's Lace, which reminds me I've got some of that to work on as well...

If it weren't for the heat I'd be out in the yard, but it is toasty today, so no go.

Post this Puppy!

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