Fallopia cilinodis (Fringed Black-bindweed)

Plant Info
Also known as: Fringed False Buckwheat
Family:Polygonaceae (Buckwheat)
Life cycle:perennial
Habitat:sun; dry; disturbed soil, woods, thickets, open fields
Bloom season:June - September
Plant height:3 to 7 foot vine
Wetland Indicator Status:none
MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):Minnesota county distribution map
National distribution (click map to enlarge):National distribution map

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Detailed Information

Flower: Flower shape: 5-petals Cluster type: panicle Cluster type: raceme

[photo of flowers] Loose branching clusters at the leaf axils along the twining stems. Small white flowers, no more than 1/8 inch across are short stalked with 5 greenish to white, oval to elliptic tepals (petals with similar sepals) that are blunt to pointed at the tip, the outer three faintly keeled, with 6 to 8 white stamens and a 3 parted style.

Leaves and stems: Leaf attachment: alternate Leaf type: simple

[photo of leaves] Leaves are simple and alternate, 1 to 4 inches long, broadly arrowhead to heart shaped, the basal lobes sometimes sharply angled, with a concave taper to a sharp tip, on a long stalk. Upper surface is dark green, sometimes reddish, with a conspicuous vein pattern, smooth to finely hairy especially along the toothless but somewhat wavy edges. Lower surface is often deeply reddish to maroon.

[photo of leaf node] A small sheath at the base of the leaf stalk, called an ocreae, is ringed by a fringe of fine cilia-like hairs from which this species gets its name. Stems are twining across the ground or on surrounding vegetation, finely hairy to almost smooth, often bright to deep red.


Fringed black-bindweed is one of three common vining species in the Fallopia genus. It can be distinguished from the non-native and weedy Black-bindweed (Fallopia convolvulus) which has less distinct leaf veins and unbranched, sparser racemes of flowers which barely open, and it also lacks the ring of cilia hairs at the base of the ocreae. The other native Climbing False Buckwheat (Fallopia scandens), also lacks the cilia fringe at the nodes, its racemes are unbranched and its small obscure flowers develop quickly into large hanging fruits with prominent wings on the three outer tepals.

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More photos

Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Anoka, Hubbard and Sherburne counties.


Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?

Posted by: MaryEllen Weller - Lake Vermilion, Cook
on: 2019-07-04 09:02:14

Thank you for posting these excellent photos. No one has been able to identify this vine, and I was concerned it might be toxic. Now I can let Fringed Black Bindweed grow and just keep it under control. Again, many thanks!

Posted by: Gary Woehler - 365th Lane, Lawler, MN
on: 2020-09-22 08:53:54

About a 100 yards along road. Really thick in some places. All yellow now, Sept.2020. How to keep it from spreading?? Gary

Posted by: K. Chayka
on: 2020-09-22 15:49:46

Gary, this is a native species so it's probably where it ought to be, in the disturbed soil of a roadside. I would not be too concerned about it.

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