Ontario Wildflowers website

Virgin's Bower
Clematis virginiana

Other common names: Leather Flower

Family: Buttercup Family (Ranunculaceae)

Distinctive features: Woody Vine; Compound leaves. Distinctive fluffy seed head persists into winter. White 4-part flowers.

Similar species:
  •   Trumpet Creeper (Campsis radicans) - larger leaves, bright red large tubular flowers.

  •   Purple Clematis (Clematis occidentalis) - purple flowers.

Flowers: Summer;  White, Green/Brown;  4 parts (petals);  White, 4 petals.

Leaves: Opposite/Whorled, Compound, Toothed;  3 leaflets.

Height: Up to 5 m (16 ft)

Fruit/Seeds: fluffy head, persist into winter.

Habitat: Fields and Open Areas, Wet Areas;  Clearings, edges of forests& thickets.

Grows in Sun/Shade: Sun

Books: Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 170    Shrubs of Ontario: 117   

Native/Non-native: Native

Status: Common.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: virginiana: of Virginia, Virginian


See Also:
  •   Virgin's Bower and the Asian Twin, from The Monday Garden, by Sue Sweeney


For more information visit: Ontario Trees and Shrubs

Photographs: 130 photographs available, of which 10 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

An overview of what this vine looks like. It twines a bit over other vegetation.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Another overview.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Closeup of the compound leaf. It has 3 leaflets. The leaves are opposite.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Flower buds in late July.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

The flowers appear in late July - August, sometimes into September. These flowers are just opening.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Full open flowers. They have 4 white petals.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Closeup of the flowers.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

The fluffy seed heads in late August. There may still be flowers on the same plant that has seeds.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

The fluffy seed heads, dried out and still on the plant in late January.

Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

Another view of the seed head in winter (December).


Range map for Virgin's Bower (Clematis virginiana)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)