Menispermum canadense
MOONSEED FAMILY (Menispermaceae)

Click on each photo thumbnail to enlarge.

This native vine grows along the ground or climbs over other plants and fences, up to 12 feet high (A,B). Its vine lacks tendrils: it climbs by wrapping itself around other plants. The leaves usually have up to six pointed lobes (G). But sometimes the lobes are indistinct, as shown in image (F). A typical ground plant usually does not produce flowers. Male (C) and female (D) flowers form drooping clusters on separate climbing plants. The spherical fruit, about 1/2 inch in diameter, is first green and turns dark blue late in the fall (E). It is rarely seen in our area.

Grows in damp woods, flowering in May and June. In Fontenelle Forest, climbing plants are uncommon, for instance on the fence of the “deer exclosure” on Stream Trail. At Neale Woods, uncommon on Columbine Trail. Ground plants are common in the uplands of both nature centers.

The content of NatureSearch is provided by dedicated volunteer Naturalists of Fontenelle Forest who strive to provide the most accurate information available. Contributors of the images retain their copyrights. The point of contact for this page is: Roland Barth.