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Clematis hirsutissima (Hairy clematis)
Muller, Thomas L.

Clematis hirsutissima

Clematis hirsutissima Pursh

Hairy Clematis, Sugarbowls, Vase Flower, Leatherflower, Lion's Beard

Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

From tufts of large, deeply dissected leaves emerge leafy, 2 ft. high flower stalks, each bearing a single, brownish-purple, nodding bell with recurved tips and a woolly exterior. In fruit, clusters of feathery, plumed achenes adorn the now erect peduncle. This is a perennial wildflower.

Unlike most other Clematis species, it is not a vine. Another common name for this species, Lion's Beard, refers to the shaggy fruit head.


From the Image Gallery

9 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Achene
Size Notes: Up to about 2 feet tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Pink , Purple , Violet
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep
Bloom Notes: Violet-blue to purple, rarely pink or white.


USA: AZ , CO , ID , MT , NE , NM , OK , OR , SD , UT , WA , WY
Native Distribution: S.c. B.C., e. WA & e. OR, e. to c. MT & CO
Native Habitat: Grasslands; sagebrush plains; ponderosa forests

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Dry, well-drained soil.


Description: Fresh seed sown in fall has proven most successful. Many Clematis spp. are also propagated by late summer layerings.
Seed Treatment: A 60-180 day period of cold-moist stratification at 33-40 degrees aids in the germination of stored seeds.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Clematis hirsutissima in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Clematis hirsutissima in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Clematis hirsutissima


Record Modified: 2022-12-06
Research By: TWC Staff

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