Clematis 'Betty Corning'

Fragrant, Long-Blooming, and So Beautiful!

Boasting a venerable heritage, Betty Corning is a Clematis with the dignity and standing of royalty. It first debuted in 1932 and has been capturing hearts across the nation ever since. Spring brings out Betty's new bronze hued foliage which adds charming understated interest to any already lush garden. Not to be outdone, the summer sun teases out Betty's blue-violet bells and the sweet perfume that accompanies them. Never denying a chance to soar, this Clematis will eagerly climb anything it can get its tendrils on - lampposts, fences, and even other shrubs! Preferring overhead sun and shaded roots, a good mulching will keep Betty happy all season long. Zones 4-9. Pruning Group III.

Review Summary
(Based on 3 Reviews)

Overall Rating: 5.0 / 5.0


Bloomed their first season
Alex from MA wrote on March 18, 2019:

I planted three of these from Wayside. They bloomed the first season and climbed right up a fence in a pretty shady location.

Hardy, Prolific Clematis
TMarie from TX wrote on June 19, 2018:

I've had my heirloom clematis from Wayside for about 10 years. It's a foundation planting on the South side of the house in North Texas (Zone 7). This clematis delivers year after year with a mass of soft purple nodding bells in spring. It continues to bloom summer (lightly here because of 100+ temps) and then more blooms in the fall when it cools off some. No fragrance to mention. It's a very dense vine and needs to be on a very sturdy support. We have high wind and I have had to replace my supports twice because they bend completely over. I figured out the secret is to prune it all the way back to main trunks each January. Be patient. It did take a couple of years to establish enough for lots of blooms.

Betty Corning Clematis
Avid gardener, garden club member, work in our town gardens. from NH wrote on March 20, 2017:

Love how quickly it grows in the spring. Heavy bloomer at first then lesser during the whole summer! I cut it back ever spring. Handles the cold NH weather.

The Late Bloomers
Unlike other types of Clematis, Group 3 blooms on "new wood" (which means the current season's growth; if you keep last year's flowering stems on the plant, they won't set buds). So, unless you live in a climate where your Clematis naturally dies back to the ground in winter, you must prepare yourself to whack off all the old stems in late winter/early spring down to about a foot from the ground, just above the place where the new season's growth begins.

"Forget it!" I hear you cry, remembering how you patiently helped your Clematis twine up the mailbox post last spring and were rewarded with a bloom show like none you'd ever experienced before in your life. I know; it seems harsh, especially for those of us in the south, who aren't used to plants that die back completely, then pop up again in spring more vigorous than ever. But if you'll take my word and remove all the old growth until you're left with a couple of stems about 12 inches from the ground, you won't be sorry. Look for the place where the stem changes color a bit — that will be where last season's growth began. Leave just an inch or two of that new color, cutting away the rest.

Once you know your Clematis's pruning number and get that first-year trim out of the way, keeping this woody climber looking its best and blooming like crazy is simple! A few minutes once a year will yield you armloads of flowers for many seasons, and you will continue to find new uses for Clematis, from hiding an unsightly fence to decorating your most formal garden art!

Shop Clematis Time to Prune? Group 1 Group 2