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Polygonum convolvulus L.

Black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassCaryophyllidaeCacti, many other succulents, carnivorous plants, and leadworts
OrderCaryophyllalesIncludes cacti, carnations, amaranths, ice plants, and many carnivorous plants
FamilyPolygonaceaeKnotweed or smartweed family
GenusPolygonumGreek poly, “many,” and gonu, “knee,” for the swollen jointed stems
SpeciesconvolvulusFrom Latin convolvere, “to twine around”

About plant names...

Wild buckwheat is a European native. It is a vine that snakes along the ground or clambers over other plants or anything else it can latch onto, winding itself in a clockwise direction around supports. Plants are up to 3' (1 m) long. At points where leaves attach there is an ocrea, or sheath. Leaves are alternate and roughly triangular to heart-shaped, with smooth edges. The lower corners of each triangle are pointed inward toward the leaf petiole (stem). Leaves are ½-2" (1.5-6 cm) × ¼-1" (7-30 mm) wide. Flowers are small, ⅛" (4 mm) each, in long thin clusters, sort of weird-looking, greenish-white to greenish-pink.

 

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/18/2010 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Groton Center, Groton, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 7 × 4½" (17 × 11 cm) ID is uncertain

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/18/2010 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Groton Center, Groton, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 9 × 6" (22 × 14 cm) ID is uncertain

Some similar species:

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Polygonum convolvulus

Polygonum scandens

Polygonum cilinode
Common Name

black bindweed

climbing false buckwheat

fringed bindweed
Plant Vine up to 3' (1 m) long. At leaf nodes there is an ocrea. Vines up to 20' (6.1 m) long. Stems are light green to bright red, almost hairless. Where leaves attach to the stem, there is a protective sheath, or ocrea Stems are 12-197" (30-500 cm) long. It climbs by twining around other stems, from right to left. There are stiff bristles at each node (ocrea. Each ocrea is ¹/₁₆-⅛" (3-4 mm) long.
Flowers Small, greenish-pink to greenish-white, in racemes (bunches); individual flowers are ⅛" (4 mm) long, racemes are up to 2½" (6.3 cm) long Racemes are 2-8" (5-20 cm) long, with small greenish flowers. Panicles are 1½-4" (4-10 cm) long, comprised of greenish-white or pink-fringed flowers. Each flower is 5-parted. Flowers appear from June to October.
Leaves Alternate, triangular or heart-shaped, lower corners of leaves aim inward toward the petiole (leaf stem) Ovate, approaching sagittate (shaped like an arrowhead), up to 2" (5 cm) × 4" (10 cm). Leaf petioles are up to 1½" (3.8 cm) long Alternate, oval to triangular, with wavy margins, often with reddish veins standing out. Their stems (petioles) are ⅜-2" (1-6 cm) long.
Fruit Three-sided, with a single dull black seed Greenish, with white or pink borders. ⅛-³/₁₆" (4-6 mm) seeds are black and very shiny.
Range/ Zones

Type Wild Wild Wild

 

Online References:

Polygonum convolvulus on

Polygonum convolvulus on

Polygonum convolvulus on the Virginia Tech Weed Identification Guide

Polygonum convolvulus on Ontario Wildflowers

Polygonum convolvulus on Wikipedia

Polygonum convolvulus on CalPhotos

Polygonum convolvulus on SEINet—the Southwest Environmental Information Network

References:

Newcomb, Lawrence, Morrison, Gordon (Illus.), Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide, Little, Brown and Company, 1977, p. 322

Peterson, Roger Tory, McKenny, Margaret, Peterson Field Guides: A Field Guide to Wildflowers of Northeastern and North Central North America, Houghton Mifflin, 1968, p. 380

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/11/2010 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Groton Center, Groton, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 15 × 10" (39 × 26 cm)

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

Note the climbing False Buckwheat (Polygonum scandens) overtaking the loosestrife. · 7/28/2009 · Near Nashua River Boat Ramp, Groton, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 30 × 44" (75 × 112 cm)

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/3/2009 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Ayer, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 6 × 9" (14 × 22 cm) ID is uncertain

Polygonum convolvulus L. var. convolvulus

Bilderdykia convolvulus (L.) Dumort.

Fallopia convolvulus (L.) A. Löve

Reynoutria convolvulus (L.) Shinners

Tiniaria convolvulus (L.) Webb & Moq.

Fallopia convolvulus (L.) A. Löve

Fallopia convolvulus (L.) Á. Löve

 

Polygonum convolvulus description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 6 Sep 2021.

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Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/18/2010 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Groton Center, Groton, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 7 × 5" (17 × 13 cm) ID is uncertain

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/3/2009 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Ayer, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 5 × 8" (13 × 19 cm) ID is uncertain

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/3/2009 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Ayer, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 8 × 5" (19 × 12 cm) ID is uncertain

Polygonum convolvulus (black bindweed, wild buckwheat, false buckwheat)

9/3/2009 · Nashua River Rail Trail, Ayer, Mass­a­chu­setts
≈ 6 × 9" (14 × 22 cm) ID is uncertain

Range:

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