Clematis Alpina 'Frances Rivis' is a delightful hardy climber, with nodding and slightly twisted violet-blue flowers bringing a frothy show of elegant colour to your garden in spring. With prompt pruning after flowering, you can expect more flowers to appear in late summer, and the silky, silvery seed heads will also make an enchanting display.
ItÂ’s easy to care for and tolerates full sun and partial shade, neutral and alkaline soils, and cold winters. You could mix this with another clematis for an extended season.
This medium-sized clematis grows to a maximum height of around 3 metres. 'Frances Rivis' will be happiest in alkaline or neutral soil. It will do well in full sun or partial shade in any aspect. If in full sun, do ensure the base and roots are shaded and kept cool with other plants or pebbles. It doesn't need pruning, just a bit of trimming back will keep it in good shape.
Clematis look fabulous up a house or garden wall, along a trellis, or grown over a garden gateway, post or arch. For a romantic look, and to add colour, you can grow it through a hedge or shrub.
Clematis slime flux. It's an uncommon bacterial infection but can be fatal. It happens when the plant has an injury and bacteria infect the wound. Signs include wilting and yellowing of the leaves, as well as the unpleasant slime in the stems where the plant is affected.
This clematis originated in Tibet, where the seeds were collected by Mrs Frances Rivis of Saxmundham, Suffolk. The Suffolk Naturalists' Society was a beneficiary in her will, and they still run a bursary for 'Studies of the county's flora' in her name.
The hybrid was raised by Sir Cedric Morris in 1965, a painter who had moved to Suffolk and opened an art school as well as indulging his passion for plants. Among his students was Lucien Freud. The Tate gallery held an exhibition of his work after his death.
Images supplied by Clematis on the Web.