Clematis chinensis

Botanical Name :Clematis chinensis
Family: Ranunculaceae
Subfamily: Ranunculoideae
Tribe: Anemoneae
Genus: Clematis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ranunculales

Synonyms : Clematis minor – Lour.

Common Name :Chinese Clematis

Habitat :E. Asia – C. and W. China.[Japan (including Ryukyu Islands), Vietnam.}  Open woods, hedges, thickets, roadsides and banks of streams

Description:
A decidious Climber growing to 5m by 5m. It is hardy to zone 6. It is in flower from September to October, and the seeds ripen from October to November. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.
The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

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Cultivation:
Prefers a deep moist soil with its roots in the shade and its shoots growing up to the light[164]. Dislikes poorly-drained heavy clay soils, but grows well in clay if grit is added for drainage. Dislikes light sandy soils. Does well on chalk. Succeeds in acid as well as alkaline soils. When planting out, in order to avoid the disease ‘clematis wilt’, it is best to plant the rootball about 8cm deeper in the soil. This will also serve to build up a good root crown of growth buds. A twining plant. The leafstalks wrap themselves around twigs and branches for support. When a side of the stalk touches an object, the growth on that side slows down whilst the other side grows at its normal rate – this causes the leaf stalk to entwine the object it is touching. Plants flower in the autumn on the current season’s growth, any pruning is best carried out in the spring before new growth begins. The flowers are produced quite late in the season and can be damaged by late frosts, so plants generally do better in the milder western parts of the country. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus. Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits. A greedy plant, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes. The flowers are often damaged by winter cold.

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Propagation:
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Sow stored seed as soon as it is obtained in a cold frame. Pre-soak the seed for 12 hours in warm water and remove as much of the tail and outer coat as possible. A period of cold stratification is beneficial. The seed germinates in 1 – 9 months or more at 20°c. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in a cold frame for the first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Internodal cuttings of soft to semi-ripe wood, late spring in sandy soil in a frame. Layering of old stems in late winter or early spring. Layering of current seasons growth in early summer

Edible Uses: Young shoots – cooked. They are said to be non-toxic in one report but caution is still advised due to reports of toxicity in this genus. It is quite probable that cooking destroys the acrimonious principle, though this is a plant that I have no desire to eat

Medicinal Uses:
Anodyne; Antidote; Antiperiodic; Antirheumatic; Antispasmodic; Antitumor; Cancer; Carminative; Diuretic.

The root is anodyne, antidote, antiperiodic, antispasmodic, carminative, diuretic and sedative[147, 176, 178, 218, 238]. A decoction is taken internally in the treatment of rheumatism and arthritis, tetanus and cold-type stomach-ache[147, 238]. The root is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[238]. The whole plant is antirheumatic[147, 176, 178, 218]. The plant has a history of folk use in the treatment of cancer[147, 176, 178, 218]. The root contains anemonin, this has antibacterial, analgesic, sedative and antispasmodic actions. It also inhibits the heart and central nervous system and is rubefacient

A decoction of the root is taken internally in the treatment of rheumatism and arthritis, tetanus and cold-type stomach-ache.  The plant has a history of folk use in the treatment of cancer. The root contains anemonin, this has antibacterial, analgesic, sedative and antispasmodic actions. It also inhibits the heart and central nervous system and is rubefacient. 15 g of the drug in decoction with 250g of rice vinegar dissolves fish bones lodged in the throat

Known Hazards : This species is harmful if eaten. The toxic principle is dissipated by heat or by drying. The plant is also a mild skin irritant

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
http://digedibles.com/database/plants.php?Clematis+chinensis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clematis
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm
http://www.wm-sec.com/clematis_chinensis.htm
http://www.stevenfoster.com/photography/imageviewsc/clematis/chinensis/cc5_121810/content/Clematis_chinensis_94370_large.html
http://www.fzrm.com/plantextracts/Chinese_Clematis_Root_extract.htm

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