Bower in Blossom

May 07, 2018

Virgin Bower

Photographer: Menashe Davidson
Summary Author: Menashe Davidson

The Bower, Clematis cirrhosa (Ranunculaceae family) is an evergreen climbing shrub found in dense growth of Mediterranean woodlands. As it's the only climbing shrub that flowers between December and February in Israel, the Bower's showy flowers are always a welcome sight during the dreary winter season. Its abundant, bell-shaped flowers have four petals, cream-colored or white, that are typically about 2 in (5 cm) across. The flowers are inclined downward to protect the sexual organs from damage that can be caused by rain and or snow. The supporter tree of this particular clematis is a fig. While most climbing plants hold the host using tendrils, the clematis attaches to host plants or supporting structures using their curling leaf stalks. Photo taken on February 1, 2018, near Nahal Ilan, in the Jehuda Hills of Israel.