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Smilax rotundifolia

Smilax rotundifolia L.

Smilax rotundifolia L. var. crenulata Small & A. Heller

Smilax rotundifolia L. var. quadrangularis (Muhl. ex Willd.) Alph. Wood

Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae (from Stearn’s Botanical Latin)
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassLiliopsidaMonocots (plants with a single seed leaf); includes the lily family
SubclassLiliidaeIncludes lilies, orchids, and many others
OrderLilialesIncludes lilies, tulips, trilliums, greenbriars, and others
FamilySmilacaceaeGreenbriar family
GenusSmilaxGreek for “clasping”
Speciesrotundifolia“With rounded leaves”

About plant names...

Common greenbrier is a widespread North American native plant. (A brier is a thicket of thorny plants.)

Identification: This woody, thorned vine reaches 10-20' (3-6.1 m) in length, clambering over other plants, attaching itself with tendrils as it goes. It is deciduous, but may retain its leaves until late in the winter in the south. Stems are somewhat diamond-shaped in cross-section, with sharp thorns up to ¼" (8 mm) long. Leaves are glossy and leathery, with several fairly prominent veins running from the base to the tip of the leaf, round or oval in shape. Flowers are yellowish-green, about ¼" (6.3 mm) around. Fruits are clusters of blue berries with whitish coatings, about ¼" (6.3 mm) in diameter. The berries can persist through much of the winter.

Online References:

Smilax rotundifolia on Southeastern Flora, the Southeastern U.S. Plant Identification Resource

Smilax rotundifolia on the USDA Forest Service's Fire Effects Information Database

Smilax rotundifolia on Carolina Nature, from Will Cook

Smilax rotundifolia at the Vanderbilt University Bioimages web site

Smilax rotundifolia at the Island Creek Elementary School's Study of Northern Virginia Ecology

Smilax rotundifolia at the Virginia Tech Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation

Smilax rotundifolia at the Vanderbilt University Bioimages web site

Smilax rotundifolia on Plants for a Future, a resource and information centre for edible and otherwise useful plants

Smilax rotundifolia on eFloras

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

In late winter. · 3/2/2011 · Susan and Raimond’s, Phoenix, AZ
≈ 3½ × 2½" (9.8 × 6.6 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

10/5/2010 · Susan and Raimond’s, Phoenix, MD
≈ 8 × 4½" (19 × 12 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

7/18/2011 · Sue and Rai’s

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

7/11/2012 · Jeff Smith Trail, Pepperell, MA
≈ 12 × 8" (31 × 20 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 16 Aug 2013.

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Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

7/18/2011 · Sue and Rai’s

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

In late winter. · 3/2/2011 · Susan and Raimond’s, Phoenix, AZ
≈ 3½ × 5" (9.2 × 13 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

2/14/2012 · Halibut Point State Park, Rockport, MA
≈ 8 × 5" (19 × 13 cm) ID is uncertain

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

The orange tentrils are invading dodder. · 9/13/2010 · Burge’s Pond, Westford, MA
≈ 11 × 7" (27 × 18 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

9/13/2010 · Burge’s Pond, Westford, MA
≈ 9 × 6" (23 × 15 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

9/13/2010 · Burge’s Pond, Westford, MA
≈ 4 × 6" (10 × 15 cm)

Smilax rotundifolia (Common Greenbriar, Common Greenbrier)

7/11/2012 · Jeff Smith Trail, Pepperell, MA
≈ 7 × 4½" (17 × 11 cm)

Range:

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