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Thanks for this, Mark. Isn't it unusual to find this clematis in this sort of habitat?
... people usually say "garden escape" in these situations.
In which case, it must have long legs!
Many clematis, including this one, have seed heads that are fibrous and fluffy, and in demand for birds' nests etc. So I suppose it's possible that some seeds adhered to a bird and were transferred out to your location.
Brightens up the dunes, though, doesn't it?
How to take close-ups with cheap phone and hand-lens:
Field Guides for Budding Botanists:
To prefer alkaline or neutral soils. If this was growing amongst dunes, you can find alkaline areas, especially in the dune slacks (mollusc shells are lime-based).
Many plants will take advantage of odd, hostile habitats if the opportunity arises, and competition is not so fierce. I'll post an old photo of a willow growing on the estuary of the Tees as an example.
Edit: I was still typing this (slowly!) while Rachy was posting her comment. The willow is at
I saw Clematis viticella happily growing on sand-dunes at Pembrey, Carms in 2001, so perhaps they like a bit of sea air.
Thanks to you all for your comments. i think if I were a clematis I might like to live in Findhorn too!
Lat/Lng: 57.66285, -3.61458
OS grid ref: NJ037648