Clematis: Terrorist of the Botanical World

Yes, I say 'Terrorist!' Western White Clematis, when it has a choice between living on its own, or intertwining its rootstock with another's, will invariably choose to intermingle. 'Why, that's just being sociable,' you say, 'where's the terrorism in that?'

Collateral damage. By placing themselves as they do, it is not possible to remove them without endangering innocent plants, breaking branches and stems, straining, unearthing, destroying root structures. Just so do terrorists place themselves amongst the innocents of their own countries, that those whose righteous wrath is directed at them will hesitate to strike, for fear of injuring and alienating those who are deserving of their nurture, who are in their care. And at the same time they entwine themselves in the lives of these innocents, pulling them towards those who are in truth their enemies, cozening them with honeyed words until they clasp them to their bosoms and drink their poisoned lies, becoming twisted and stunted as that which is good is drawn away to serve the evil ones.

So does Clematis, rooting itself amongst others, entwining itself around them and using them to lift itself toward the stars themselves, stealing their light, strangling their limbs, and eventually obtaining their very deaths, all to the Greater Glory of Clematis! The gardener must harden their heart and act early, whilst Clematis' roots are yet shallow, whilst the least damage is done to those it would entangle with fine tendrils whose strength is as iron itself. The gardener must embrace the Greater Truth that Clematis will inevitably do far greater damage to these innocent plants than the gardener can possibly cause whilst battling Clematis, that the better part of valour is to strike early and decisively whilst the invader is still weak.

This requires diligence on the gardener's part, an ever-watchful eye, never relenting, for while Clematis spreads best via vine and root, yet still some seeds do fall on fertile ground and it spring up where it dwelt not before.

And the dread knowledge that there may be times when a mistake is made, where something superficially similar to Clematis at a stage in its growth will be seen as Clematis and be rent from the ground, only to then realize their error and weep bitter tears of remorse, knowing that naught they might do will bring back the innocent destroyed in error.

Such is the Evil that is Clematis.

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