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  See also blue Clematis.
Clematis ligusticifolia
Clematis ligusticifolia (Virginís Bower Clematis)
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Foothills, montane. Streamsides. Spring.
Highway 145 north of Dolores, June 2, 2004.

From mid-to-late summer, Virginís Bower produces numerous small white flowers, but it is the great mound of leaves (six feet tall as pictured at left) and the very eye-catching mass of yellow/white, seed-carrying plumes (see the last two photographs below) that really attract attention.  The plant is very common at lower elevations along bottom lands and streams where it twines and climbs shrubs, trees, and fences (as in the photograph at left).

Linnaeus named this genus in 1753 and Thomas Nuttall named the species in 1838 from a collection he made in 1834 "in open and in bushy places" near the Snake River.  "Clematis" is Greek for "a shoot", and "ligusticifolia" is Latin for "Privet-like leaves".

Clematis ligusticifolia
Clematis ligusticifolia (Virginís Bower Clematis)
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Foothills, montane. Streamsides. Spring.
Highway 145 north of Dolores, July 1, 2004.

Clematis ligusticifolia
Clematis ligusticifolia (Virginís Bower Clematis)
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Foothills, montane. Streamsides. Spring.
Highway 145 north of Dolores, July 22, 2004.

This photograph and the next two show the fertilized ovaries swelling and exploding into a mass of fluff surrounding the seeds.

Clematis ligusticifolia
Clematis ligusticifolia (Virginís Bower Clematis)
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Foothills, montane. Streamsides. Spring.
Highway 145 north of Dolores, July 22, 2004.

Clematis ligusticifolia
Clematis ligusticifolia (Virginís Bower Clematis)
Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)

Foothills, montane. Streamsides. Spring.
Near Dolores River, September 19, 2006.

This three foot by three foot mass of seeds and fluff is just a fourth of the size of this Clematis vine.

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Range map for Clematis ligusticifolia  

See also blue Clematis