Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic
Although small in size, the flowers of Clematis virginiana are large in number and attract a variety of pollinators – bees, wasps, butterflies and moths. They also seem to be a good hunting ground for mates as evidenced in this video by the activities of Eremnophila aureonotata. If you observe a rather large insect flying around in summer near abundant wildflower clusters – Pycnanthemum, Daucus carota, Rudbeckia, Clematis virginiana, Eupatorium, Solidago – look closely, because it may actually be a pair of these thread-waisted wasps flying together – the male on top just hitching a ride or busy mating. Video © 2019 Mary Free
In eastern North American lowlands, this vigorous native vine quickly climbs by twining or trails along the ground in twisted fashion. A prolific bloomer, its white flowers attract pollinators late summer into fall followed by showy seed heads reminiscent of an “old man’s beard,” another of its common names.