Romantika clematis bears flowers so dark, so lush. It is the closest thing to a black flower I have seen. When the sun hits the blooms, the impossibly deep black-purple color is replaced with a beautiful, but more common, purple.
On an overcast day, Romantika clematis is dark and mysterious.
The photograph directly above gives some idea of the character of the flower color. So much is dependent upon the light and time of day when the image is captured. The first time I saw Romantika was on a cloudy, overcast day. The flowers were so dark they looked black.
I was standing there fairly dumbstruck when the sun came blasting out from behind the clouds for a moment, rendering the Romantika medium purple in the light. It really goes to show that flowers of most species are at their best in the shade, late in the day, or when it is overcast outside.
Romantika clematis has beautiful purple-black sepals
There are other dark purple clematis, but with stamens often red or purple, other clematis can’t match the beauty of the juxtaposition of light and dark in Romantika’s flowers. By the way, clematis do not have petals. They have enlarged sepals. Read more here. Bred by hybridizer Uno Kivistik, Romantika grows 6′-8′ in a season
Plant clematis a couple of inches deep and provide sun on the leaves and shade at the root zone. Water until established the first year. Clematis are generally very easy to grow once established. They tend to be slow to establish so be patient for a year or two. Once the root system is established growth and flower production will improve dramatically.
Romantika flowers on new growth each year. Prune hard in late winter.
You can expect two flushes of flowers, one in late spring/early summer and then again in late summer/early fall. Because it flowers on new growth you do not have to be wary of pruning off last year’s flowers. (It is a Type 3 clematis).
It can suffer from powdery mildew. Cultural prevention instead of the spraying of fungicides all over the garden is the recommended course of action. In our garden, we grow all kinds of plants susceptible to mildew and do not spray (due to environmental concern and some laziness). We grow garden phlox and monarda and rarely have a problem.
Locate plants where they will have plenty of air circulation. Lots of sun is beneficial. Water overhead in the morning to wash mildew spores away. Do not water at night. Do not over-fertilize.