This vine features bright lemon-yellow nodding blooms that hang from dark purple stems. (Richie Steffen)

This vine features bright lemon-yellow nodding blooms that hang from dark purple stems. (Richie Steffen)

Great Plant Pick: Clematis chiisanensis ‘Lemon Bells’

This vine features bright lemon-yellow nodding blooms that hang from dark purple stems.

What: Clematis chiisanensis “Lemon Bells,” introduced by the University of British Columbia, features bright lemon-yellow nodding blooms hanging from dark purple stems. Each dangling flower has a distinctive red blush at the base of the petals. A robust but not rampant grower, it will continue to produce sporadic flowers on the new growth through the summer. Its open growing habit makes it a suitable vine to grow through large shrubs and small trees without smothering the woody host. Once the flowering is finished, attractive fluffy seed heads dangle along the vine through the end of summer.

Where: This clematis will grow best in full sun to light shade. Provide a location with rich well-drained soil where it can be regularly watered during dry weather. Plant vines that are well-rooted and at least two years old. In our climate, planting too deeply can smother the roots, especially in heavy soils. Set young plants at the same depth they were in their nursery pots.

Size: Yellow bell clematis will grow to be 15 feet tall and 15 feet wide when mature.

Care: Clematis are heavy feeders and appreciate fertilizing in spring. This clematis blooms on old stems and on new growth, so it is best to only prune lightly in late spring to early summer, once the first flush of flowers have finished. Remove congested or tangled growth and thin to the strongest stems. Well established, overgrown plants can be cut back to 12 inches tall in winter to remove large tangles. This allows robust new stems to fill out the plant, but it will not flower the next year.

— Richie Steffen, Great Plant Picks

Talk to us

More in Life

Hamilton-Beachbum Zombie served at Latitude 29 in New Orleans — and now your own home bar. (Randy Schmidt)
He cracked the Zombie code. Now he has his own Zombie rum

A new spirit from Jeff “Beachbum” Berry is here to reanimate your tiki cocktails.

In this easy appetizer, crostini are topped with puttanesca, a spicy sauce made with tomato, capers, olives, garlic and anchovy. (Gretchen McKay/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS)
Eat This: Puttanesca crostini part of feast of summer fishes

Top little crusts with a simple and spicy sauce made with anchovies, olives, tomatoes, capers and garlic.

Edmonds native and author Nova McBee at Brackets Landing Park on Friday, April 9, 2021 in Edmonds, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
This Edmonds’ writer’s YA novel offers ‘Calculated’ intrigue

Novelist Nova McBee’s newest work stars a teenage math prodigy trapped in a criminal underworld.

When battling a summer cold, a quick trip to the drugstore and a painless test to rule out Covid helps provide peace of mind. (Jennifer Bardsley)
When you get a cold even though you’re still wearing a mask

She stocked up on over-the-counter medicine at Walgreens after getting a drive-thru COVID-19 test.

Take long view on the big and small decisions of parenthood

It’s important to consider the bigger picture — the values and traits you hope to nurture in your children.

The night watchman signals “All’s well.”
Rothenburg’s night watchman a dangerous job in medieval times

The 15th-century German man would sing the ‘all’s well’ tune at the top of the hour through the night.

Club Med vacation is canceled. Do I have to accept a credit?

Her Club Med vacation gets canceled when the pandemic hits. Then her rescheduled vacation gets canceled. Can she get a refund?

Follow these step-by-step directions to plant all summer long and never lose one to the heat. (Getty Images)
Gardening pro shares 7 steps to successful summer planting

When a landscape contractor in the Sacramento Valley, he planted all summer long and never lost a plant.

Evan Thompson / The Record
The Shifty Sailors performed at the Celebrate America event on July 3 at Freeland Park.
It’ll be concerts ahoy! on Whidbey Island this weekend

The Shifty Sailors and the Saratoga Orchestra will perform two pop-up concerts. They’ll do the TikTok sensation, “The Wellerman.”

Most Read