Virginia Creeper, Woodbine - Parthenocissus quinquefolia

Native Shrubs ... in wildlife landscaping

West Virginia Native Plant Society
West Virginia Nongame Wildlife Program

  Form: High climbing or tailing woody vine, sometimes climbing to crowns of tall trees, 30 to 55 feet or more.
  Bark : Older vines produce tendrils along stem to grip supports. Can be mistaken for poison ivy.
  Leaves: Deciduous, alternate, compound, 5-leaflets, leaflets 2 to 6 inches long, oval to elliptical or lanceolate, coarsely toothed above middle. Purple to crimson in autumn.
  Flowers: June-July. Terminal clusters or from upper leaf axils, 25 to 200 flowers per cluster, greenish-individual flowers 1/8 inch across. Not showy.
  Fruit: Blue or black globose berry. Ripens in October, stays on vine into winter. Fruit stalks are red.
West Virginia Range:
Common in all counties.
Natural Habitat:
Moist woods, thickets, fencerows, walls, hillsides and rocky banks.
Wildlife Use:
Fruits, are very important as fall and winter food for songbirds, numerous other birds, including all game species. Also eaten by mice, chipmunks and skunks. Foliage and twigs browsed by white-tailed deer.
Horticulture:
Uses: Trellis, wall cover, screens for porches, cover for fences and rock piles. Brilliant fall color.
Light: Partial to full sun..
Soil Moisture: Moist to dry.
Soil pH: Acid to neutral..
Problems: None. Very hardy plant.

Compiled by: Katharine B. Gregg, professor of biology, West Virginia Wesleyan College, Buckhannon, West Virginia

Written by West Virginia Native Plant Society members and jointly published with the WV Nongame Program

Illustration from Flora of West Virginia, Strausbaugh and Core