Mikania scandens (L.) Willd.

climbing hempvine

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New England Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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North America Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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Facts About

Climbing hempvine inhabits riparian and lakeside forests and thickets in eastern North America. In the northern part of New England it is confined to the coastal plain. The Seminole Indians used this plant to treat skin conditions resulting in itching.

Habitat

Floodplain (river or stream floodplains), forests, shrublands or thickets

Characteristics

Habitat
terrestrial
New England state
  • Connecticut
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • Rhode Island
Leaf type
leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
Leaf arrangement
opposite: there are two leaves per node along the stem
Leaf blade edges
  • the edge of the leaf blade has no teeth or lobes
  • the edge of the leaf blade has teeth
Flower type in flower heads
the flower head has disk flowers only, and lacks the strap-shaped flowers
Ray flower color
NA
Tuft or plume on fruit
at least a part of the plume is made up of fine bristles
Spines on plant
the plant has no spines
Leaf blade length
30–150 mm
Disk flower number
1-5
Show All Characteristics
  • Flowers
    Bases of bract appendages
    NA
    Bract cycle number
    there is one main cycle of bracts
    Bract outer side hair type
    the bracts are not hairy on their outer surface
    Bract shape
    • the main bracts are lanceolate (widest above the base, then taper narrowly towards the tip)
    • the main bracts are linear (long and very narrow)
    Bract tip shape
    the tips of the bracts are acuminate (tapered to a narrow point)
    Disk flower color
    • blue to purple
    • pink to red
    • white
    Disk flower lobe number
    5
    Disk flower number
    1-5
    Disk flower reproductive parts
    the disk flower has both pollen- and seed-producing parts
    Disk width
    6–7 mm
    Flower head outer flowers
    at the outer edge of the flower head, the flowers have no enlarged lobe or strap, and are of similar size as those in the center of the disk
    Flower head platform
    the base has no bristles or papery scales
    Flower head platform surface
    NA
    Flower head profile
    the disk is flat or nearly flat across the top
    Flower head shape
    the sides of the flower head are roughly parallel, like a cylinder
    Flower type in flower heads
    the flower head has disk flowers only, and lacks the strap-shaped flowers
    Height of flower head base
    4–5.5 mm
    Inflorescence branching (Solidago)
    NA
    Inflorescence shape
    the inflorescence is flat-topped in profile
    Number of bracts at flower head base
    4
    Ovary attachment
    the ovary is attached at or near the base
    Ovary lines or ribs
    there are four to six lines or ribs visible on the ovary
    Ovary profile
    in profile, the ovary is lanceolate (widest below the middle, tapering to both ends)
    Ray flower color
    NA
    Ray flower reproductive parts
    NA
    Ray flowers
    0
    Ray length
    0 mm
    Reproductive system
    all the flowers on the plant contain both carpels and stamens
    Scale tip
    NA
    Style branches
    the style branch is narrow at the tip, or the style branches are narrow at the tips
  • Fruits or seeds
    Number of pappus parts
    11 or more
    Ovary length in developed fruit
    1.8–2.2 mm
    Seed hair tuft bases
    the pappus hairs are attached to one another near the base
    Seed hair tuft color
    • the pappus hairs are another color
    • the pappus hairs are pale red to red-brown or purple
    • the pappus hairs are white or off-white
    Seed hair tuft details
    the pappus hairs are hooked or barbed
    Seed hair tuft length
    4–4.5 mm
    Seed hair tuft tips
    the pappus hairs are slender
    Seed tuft scale number
    0
    Seed tuft type
    the pappus is made of very fine hairs or bristles
    Top of disk flower ovary
    NA
    Tuft or plume on fruit
    at least a part of the plume is made up of fine bristles
  • Glands or sap
    Leaf blade glands
    the leaf blades have no glandular (translucent) dots or scales
    Ovary glands
    there are glands on the ovary surface
    Sap
    the sap is clear and watery
  • Growth form
    Growth form
    the plant is a vine that crawls or climbs, and is unable to support its own weight
    Plant lifespan
    the plant is perennial, it shows evidence of previous year's leaves, stems or stem bases
    Spines on plant
    the plant has no spines
  • Leaves
    Final leaf segment length (compound lvs only)
    0 mm
    Final leaf segment width (compound lvs only)
    0 mm
    Hairs on underside of leaf blade
    • the underside of the leaf is fuzzy or hairy
    • the underside of the leaf is not hairy, or has very few hairs
    Hairs on upper side of leaf blade
    • the upper side of the leaf is fuzzy or hairy
    • the upper side of the leaf is not hairy, or has very few hairs
    Leaf arrangement
    opposite: there are two leaves per node along the stem
    Leaf blade base
    the leaf has a distinct petiole
    Leaf blade base shape
    the base of the leaf is cordate (heart-shaped) or sagittate (arrow-shaped)
    Leaf blade bloom
    the underside of the leaf has no noticeable bloom
    Leaf blade edges
    • the edge of the leaf blade has no teeth or lobes
    • the edge of the leaf blade has teeth
    Leaf blade length
    30–150 mm
    Leaf blade shape
    • the leaf blade is ovate (widest below the middle and broadly tapering at both ends)
    • the leaf blade is triangular, with the stalk or attachment point on one of the sides
    Leaf blade surface colors
    there is no noticeable color variation on the upper surface of the leaf
    Leaf blade tip
    • the tip of the leaf blade is acuminate (tapers to a long, thin point)
    • the tip of the leaf blade is caudate (has a very long tail-like projection ending in a point)
    Leaf blade veins
    the leaf blade has three main veins running from the base towards the tip
    Leaf blade width
    20–110 mm
    Leaf disposition
    the leaves are nearly similar in size, prominence of teeth, and length of stalks throughout the stem
    Leaf spines
    there are no spines on the leaf edges
    Leaf stalk
    the leaves have leaf stalks
    Leaf stalk length
    20–50 mm
    Leaf tip extension
    NA
    Leaf type
    leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
    Leaflet number
    0
    Specific leaf type
    the leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets
    Teeth per side of leaf blade
    At least 0
  • Place
    Habitat
    terrestrial
    New England state
    • Connecticut
    • Maine
    • Massachusetts
    • New Hampshire
    • Rhode Island
    Specific habitat
    • forests
    • river or stream floodplains
    • shrublands or thickets
  • Scent
    Plant odor
    the plant does not have much of an odor
  • Stem, shoot, branch
    Flowering stem cross-section
    • the flowering stem is circular, or with lots of small angles
    • the flowering stem is roughly square
    Leaves on stem
    there is at least one full leaf above the base of the flowering stem
    Stem bloom
    there is no powdery or waxy film on the stem
    Stem internode hair direction
    the hairs point mostly upwards to outwards
    Stem internode hair length
    At least 0 mm
    Stem internode hairs
    • the stem has hairs between the nodes
    • the stem has no hairs between the nodes
    Stem wings
    the stem does not have wings on it

Wetland Status

Occurs only in wetlands. (Wetland indicator code: OBL)

New England Distribution and Conservation Status

Distribution

Connecticut
present
Maine
present
Massachusetts
present
New Hampshire
present
Rhode Island
present
Vermont
absent

Conservation Status

Exact status definitions can vary from state to state. For details, please check with your state.

Maine
historical (S-rank: SH), potentially extirpated (code: PE)
Massachusetts
unranked (S-rank: SNR)
New Hampshire
extremely rare (S-rank: S1), endangered (code: E)

Native to North America?

Yes

Synonyms

  • Eupatorium scandens L.
  • Mikania scandens var. pubescens (Nutt.) Torr. & Gray
  • Willoughbya scandens (L.) Kuntze

Family

Asteraceae

Genus

Mikania

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Information from Dichotomous Key of Flora Novae Angliae

1.  Mikania scandens (L.) Willd. N

climbing hempvine. Eupatorium scandens L.; Mikania scandens (L.) Willd. var. pubescens (Nutt.) Torr. & Gray; Willoughbya scandens (L.) Kuntze • CT, MA, ME, NH, RI; restricted to the coastal plain in northern New England. Riparian and lacustrine forests and thickets.