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Peppervine Ampelopsis arborea

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
am-pel-OPE-sis ar-BOR-ee-ah
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
This plant is an invasive species in North Carolina
Description

Peppervine is a deciduous vine with leaves that are alternate, bipinnate or tripinnate with a coarsely toothed margin. The bark is brown with thin layers. In summer, small, 5-petaled green flowers are borne on short cymes. The vine produces a blue-black drupe that matures in late summer to early fall.

Ampelopsis arborea is a close cousin to grapes. It has colorful berries, and can easily cover the ground or climb a trellis.  Its pest resistance and tolerance of adverse weather conditions are the same characteristics which often make it weedy and invasive. It easily outcompetes desirable smaller plants that happen to be in its path.  To remove this vine, hand pull in the spring  before flowering

The specific characteristics of this plant are a deciduous woody stalk and vine, with non-adhesive tendrils that occur opposite and closely resemble native grapes.  It is commonly mistaken for poison ivy.  

Fire Risk: This plant has an extreme flammability rating and should not be planted within the defensible space of your home.  Select plants with a low flammability rating for the sites nearest your home. 

Other habits: climbing with few tendrils and trailing as a vine; bushy

Site: This plant prefers moist soil and can take full sun to light shade. However, the best fruiting is when it gets full sun.

Found in: Forest or natural area, as native vine in open woods; weedy in disturbed areas; landscape, as a cultivated ornamental vine

Seasons of Interest: 

  • Leaf:  Fall
  • Blooms:  Summer, late summer
  • Nut/Fruit/Seed:  Late summer

Insects, Diseases, or Other Plant Problems: This plant is very invasive, its seeds being spread by birds and small mammals.

Fire Risk: This plant has an extreme flammablity rating and should not be planted within the defensible space of your home.  Select plants with a low fammability rating for the sites nearest your home.

 

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple#red#white#fruit#black#deciduous#fall color#birds#invasive#songbirds#poisonous#full sun#partial shade#blue#light shade#shrub#red berries#wildlife plant#purple leaves#dark green#red leaves#native shrub#trellis#showy fruits#wet sites#small mammals#moist soil#food source#fire#high flammability#extreme flammability#NC native#white berries#poisonous berries#vines#deer resistant#bushy#small and large mammals#non-edible berries#blue berries#black berries#fire risk#ornamental vine#native garden#green fruits#native vine#food source summer
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple#red#white#fruit#black#deciduous#fall color#birds#invasive#songbirds#poisonous#full sun#partial shade#blue#light shade#shrub#red berries#wildlife plant#purple leaves#dark green#red leaves#native shrub#trellis#showy fruits#wet sites#small mammals#moist soil#food source#fire#high flammability#extreme flammability#NC native#white berries#poisonous berries#vines#deer resistant#bushy#small and large mammals#non-edible berries#blue berries#black berries#fire risk#ornamental vine#native garden#green fruits#native vine#food source summer
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Ampelopsis
    Species:
    arborea
    Family:
    Vitaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    US
    Distribution:
    TX, OK, AR, LA, FL, north to VA and west to MO
    Fire Risk Rating:
    extreme flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Its fleshy fruits are eaten by songbirds and small and large mammals. White-tailed deer browse the leaves and twigs. Wherever the feasting birds and mammals go, peppervine seeds are spread in their droppings..
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    pest resistance, tolerance of adverse weather conditions
    Climbing Method:
    Tendrils
    Edibility:
    Berries are poisonous! Do not eat the berries!
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Poisonous
    Shrub
    Vine
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Spreading
    Maintenance:
    High
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Wet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Blue
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Berry
    Fruit Description:
    The berries appear from September into late fall. As a cluster of small berries mature, their coloration gradually changes from green to white to currant-red to shiny/ glossy blue-black. Berries on a given cluster mature at different rates; thus, clusters will typically consist of differently colored berries. Berries are dry or slightly fleshy. Peppervine produces an abundance of colorful berries, with each berry containing two to four seeds. The fruit is attractive food for birds and large mammals as a minor food, and for smaller mammals as a food lower on their choice of items.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    Insignificant
    White
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Description:
    Peppervine has inconspicuous greenish white flowers opposite the leaves from June through August.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Leaf Margin:
    Dentate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are alternate, bi-pinnately divided. Newly emerged leaves are purple-red and change to a light green to dark green as they reach mature size. Foliage turns red in fall.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Smooth
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Attracts:
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Insect Pests
    Wet Soil
    Problems:
    Invasive Species
    Poisonous to Humans
    Problem for Children
    Weedy
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    CAUSES ONLY LOW TOXICITY IF EATEN. Poisonous through ingestion. Poison part are the berries. Symptoms: Unknown; questionably poisonous, but use caution.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Unknown
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Fruits