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Climber Wall Shrub

Codonopsis clematidea

A twining herbaceous climber to 1.5m high, with slender, branching stems and narrowly ovate grey-green leaves that have an unpleasant scent when crushed. Nodding, bell-shaped, palest blue flowers, with dark purple-blue markings on the insides and a yellow and black central eye, are produced at the tips of the stems in late summer

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Size
Ultimate height
1–1.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
1–1.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green Grey Silver
Summer Blue Green Grey Silver
Autumn Green Grey Silver
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

East–facing or South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Campanulaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Climbing
Genus

Codonopsis can be erect and bushy, or twining herbaceous perennials with fleshy or tuberous roots, simple leaves and bell-shaped or star-shaped flowers in summer, often beautifully veined

Name status

Correct

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How to grow

Cultivation

Thrives in light, fertile, moist but well-drained soil in sun or part shade, with shelter from strong winds. Will happily scramble through shrubs to give a second flush of flowers. Plants die back to overwinter as tubers and can be late to emerge in spring, will benefit from a winter mulch in colder regions

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in containers in a cold frame in autumn

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Climber and wall shrubs
Pruning

Cut back faded stems in late autumn

Pests

May be susceptible to slugs and snails

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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