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Field Bindweed

(Convolvulus arvensis)

Common Names

wild morning glory, European bindweed, creeping jenny, creeping Charlie, small flowered morning glory, perennial morning glory, field morning glory, devil's guts, orchard morning-glory, possession vine, corn bind

Description

Field bindweed is a persistent, perennial vine that is a member of the morning-glory family. It provides serious problems for farmers and ranchers in cultivated fields, but can also be found in lawns. The root system of field bindweed is extensive and grows roots both vertically and laterally creating dense mats under the soil. Roots are white and cord-like and produce buds of which new shoots start from. Leaves are dark green, smooth, alternate, petioled, and arrow-shaped with blunt tips. The stem is a vine that grows along the ground until it reaches something to climb. It then climbs aggressively and forms dense infestations. Flowers are showy and white to pink in color and bloom from June to August. They are funnel or bell-shaped, exist on longer stalks from the main stem, and are about one inch in diameter. Seeds are pear-shaped, light to gray-brown in color and have small bumps on the surface. Field bindweed primarily reproduces through its root system.

Key Features

Twining, vine-like stems, blunt ended, arrow-shaped dark green leaves, and bell shaped white to pink flowers on long stalks.

Habitat

Field bindweed is found in a wide range of habitats: orchards, roadsides, stream banks, lake shores, ditches, cultivated lands, and disturbed habitats, and as with most invasives, especially in disturbed sites. Field bindweed prefers strong sunlight and uses its vine stems to move into sunlight. It can persist in dry to moderately moist soils and is capable of surviving drought.

Currently found in the following counties:

Beaverhead, Bighorn, Broadwater, Carbon, Cater, Cascade, Custer, Daniels, Dawson, Fallon, Flathead, Gallatin, Glacier, Granite, Hill, Jefferson, Judith Basin, Lake, Lewis & Clark, Liberty, Lincoln, Madison, McCone, Mineral, Missoula, Park, Powell, Prairie, Ravalli. Richland, Roosevelt, Rosebud, Sanders, Sheridan, Silver Bow, Stillwater, Teton, Treasure, Valley, Wheatland, Yellowstone.

IWM

Interesting Facts

While field bindweed is persistent, it isn't overly competitive if more desirable vegetation can be established. Seeds from this plant can remain viable in the soil for up to fifty or more years. Field bindweed has also been used for medicinal purposes: tea made from the flowers is laxative and is also used in the treatment of fevers and wounds and spider bites.

Commonly Confused Plants

  • Ornamental Morning Glory
  • Hedge Bindweed
  • Wild Buckwheat

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Photo credits:Photo Credits: David Cappaert, Michigan State University, Bugwood.org; Tom Heutte, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org; Richard Old, XID Services, Inc., Bugwood.org; Isidro Martínez