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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

This native perennial plant is a woody vine up to 20' long. Its stems can twine about fences and adjacent vegetation and they branch occasionally. These stems are initially green or dull red, but they eventually turn brown and woody. Young stems are sparsely pubescent, terete or angular, and they become somewhat enlarged at the petiole bases. The opposite leaves are primarily trifoliate, although some of them are simple. The petioles of these leaves (whether simple or compound) are up to 2" long; they are green or dull red and sparsely pubescent, like the stems. The leaflets and simple leaves are up to 4" long and 2" across; they are ovate, dentate or shallowly cleft along their margins, and mostly glabrous. However, the undersides of the leaves or leaflets are sometimes slightly pubescent, especially along the major veins. The upper surfaces of leaves and leaflets are yellowish green to dark green, while their lower surfaces are pale green with elevated major veins. The petiolules (basal stalklets) of the leaflets are similar to the petioles, except they are shorter. The petiolule of the terminal leaflet is longer than those of the lateral leaflets.
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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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Distribution

Range and Habitat in Illinois

Virgin's Bower occurs occasionally throughout Illinois (see Distribution Map). It is a little more common in northern and western Illinois than other areas of the state. Habitats include edges of woodlands, moist thickets, moist meadows in floodplain areas, banks of rivers, slopes of drainage ditches, low ground along railroads, and fence rows. Virgin's Bower can be found in both disturbed and natural areas. It is sometimes cultivated as an ornamental garden plant. Faunal Associations
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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

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Man., N.B., N.S., Ont., P.E.I., Que.; Ala., Ark., Conn., Del., Fla., Ga., Ill., Ind., Iowa, Kans., Ky., La., Maine, Md., Mass., Mich., Minn., Miss., Mo., Nebr., N.H., N.J., N.Y., N.C., N.Dak., Ohio, Okla., Pa., R.I., S.C., S.Dak., Tenn., Tex., Vt., Va., W.Va., Wis.
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© Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Boulevard, St. Louis, MO, 63110 USA

Source: Missouri Botanical Garden

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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Stems climbing, 2-7 m. Leaf blade 3-foliolate; leaflets ovate to lanceolate, 3.5-9 × 1.5-7.5 cm, margins coarsely toothed to entire; surfaces abaxially sparsely to densely pilose, adaxially glabrate. Inflorescences axillary, 3-many-flowered simple or compound cymes. Flowers unisexual; pedicel slender, 1-2 cm; sepals wide-spreading, not recurved, white to cream, elliptic or nearly oblong to oblanceolate, 6-14 mm, abaxially densely white-hairy, adaxially sparsely white-hairy; stamens ca. 30-50+; filaments glabrous; staminodes absent or fewer than stamens; pistils 40-70; beak nearly equaling sepals. Achenes ovate , 2.5-3.5 × l.5 mm, conspicously rimmed, sparsely short-hairy; beak 2.5-5 cm. 2 n = 16.
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Diagnostic Description

Synonym

Clematis canadensis Miller; C. holosericea Pursh; C. missouriensis Rydberg; C. virginiana var. missouriensis (Rydberg) E. J. Palmer & Steyermark
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Ecology

Habitat

Range and Habitat in Illinois

Virgin's Bower occurs occasionally throughout Illinois (see Distribution Map). It is a little more common in northern and western Illinois than other areas of the state. Habitats include edges of woodlands, moist thickets, moist meadows in floodplain areas, banks of rivers, slopes of drainage ditches, low ground along railroads, and fence rows. Virgin's Bower can be found in both disturbed and natural areas. It is sometimes cultivated as an ornamental garden plant. Faunal Associations
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Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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Streamsides, wet roadsides, fencerows, and other moist, disturbed, wooded or open sites, locally abundant; 0-1500m.
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Associations

Flower-Visiting Insects of Virgin's Bower in Illinois

Clematis virginiana (Virgin's Bower)
(Bees suck nectar or collect pollen, other insects suck nectar; information is available for staminate flowers only; observations are from Robertson)

On staminate flowers:

Bees (long-tongued)
Apidae (Apinae): Apis mellifera sn; Apidae (Bombini): Bombus impatiens sn cp

Bees (short-tongued)
Halictidae (Halictinae): Agapostemon sericea sn, Halictus rubicunda sn, Lasioglossum illinoensis sn fq, Lasioglossum imitatus sn cp fq, Lasioglossum versatus sn cp, Lasioglossum zephyrus sn cp fq; Halictidae (Sphecodini): Sphecodes clematidis sn, Sphecodes dichroa sn fq; Colletidae (Hylaeinae): Hylaeus affinis sn

Wasps
Sphecidae (Bembicinae): Synnevrus plagiatus; Sphecidae (Crabroninae): Lestica confluentus, Lindenius columbianus, Oxybelus uniglumis; Sphecidae (Sphecinae): Isodontia apicalis, Sceliphron caementaria, Sphex ichneumonea; Scoliidae: Scolia bicincta; Vespidae (Eumeninae): Ancistrocerus adiabatus, Euodynerus foraminatus

Flies
Stratiomyidae: Stratiomys normula; Syrphidae: Allograpta obliqua, Eristalis transversus, Platycheirus quadratus, Sphaerophoria contiqua, Syritta pipiens fq, Toxomerus marginatus; Conopidae: Thecophora occidensis; Tachinidae: Archytas analis, Archytas aterrima, Belvosia unifasciata, Gnadochaeta globosa, Linaemya comta, Phasia purpurascens, Siphona geniculata, Siphosturmia phyciodis; Sarcophagidae: Amobia aurifrons fq, Helicobia rapax, Sphixapata trilineata fq; Calliphoridae: Calliphora splendida, Calliphora vicina, Cochliomyia macellaria fq, Lucilia sericata; Muscidae: Graphomya americana, Limnophora narona, Musca domestica fq, Neomyia cornicina; Anthomyiidae: Calythea nigricans, Delia platura; Fanniidae: Fannia canicularis, Fannia incisurata, Fannia manicata fq; Milichiidae: Pholeomyia indecora; Sepsidae: Meroplius stercoraria, Sepsis violacea; Piophilidae: Piophila casei, Prochyliza xanthostoma

Butterflies
Lycaenidae: Celastrina argiolus

Plant Bugs
Miridae: Lopidea medius

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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flowering/Fruiting

Flowering summer (Jun-Sep).
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Clematis virginiana

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Clematis virginiana

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 3
Specimens with Barcodes: 3
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N5 - Secure

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

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Wikipedia

Clematis virginiana

Clematis virginiana (also known as Devil's Darning Needles, Devil's Hair, Love Vine, Traveller's Joy, Virgin's Bower, Virginia Virgin's Bower, Wild Hops, and Woodbine; syn. Clematis virginiana L. var. missouriensis (Rydb.) Palmer & Steyermark [1] ) is a vine of the Ranunculaceae family native to the United States and Canada. The rationale for some of the common names is unclear, as they include examples normally applied to unrelated plants, including twining parasites (e.g. "devil's hair" for Cuscuta). The name "Love Vine" also is applied to alleged aphrodisiacs, such as Caribbean species of Cassytha, which are unrelated to Clematis, not being in the family Ranunculaceae.

This plant is an aggressively growing vine which can climb to heights of 10–20 ft. It grows on the edges of the woods, moist slopes, fence rows, in thickets and on streambanks. It produces white, fragrant flowers about an inch in diameter during summer and early autumn.[2]

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]


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Notes

Comments

Clematis virginiana is the most frequent and widespread virgin's-bower in eastern North America. It is easily distinguished from C. catesbyana by the presence of three ovate leaflets. 

 Native Americans used infusions prepared from the roots of Clematis virginiana medicinally to treat kidney ailments, and mixed them with milkweed to heal backaches and venereal sores. Decoctions of stems were ingested to induce strange dreams. In addition, the plant was used as an ingredient in green corn medicine (D. E. Moerman 1986).

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