You are here

Field Bindweed

Field Bindweed
Convolvulus arvensis
(Order Solanales; Family Convolvulaceae)

 
Convolvulus arvensis. Photos by Alicia Oberg, 2011.

 

Diagnosis: Perennial.
Height from 0.5 to 2.0 meters.
Stems: Trailing, up to 5 feet long, slender, branched, hairy.
Leaves: Alternate, simple, arrowhead-shaped, 1-3 inches long and 0.5-2.25 inches wide, with a 1-3 cm petiole.
Flowers: Calyx is 5-lobed. Corolla is 5 petals fused into tube to form funnel-shape calyx, pleated, 0.75-1 inch across, pure white in color to white with pink stripes, surrounded by small bracts.
Fruits: Small, round, brown capsules 1/8 inch wide containing 2 or more seeds with a viability of up to 20-50 years.
Roots: Extensive system of taproot and rhizomes. 
Similar species: Hedge bindweed and Wild Buckwheat are similar to Field Bindweed. These species can be differentiated based on the shape of the leaves, flower characteristics, roots, and seeds.  

 
Field Identification Guide to differentiate Field Bindweed from Hedge bindweed and Wild Buckwheat (http://www.ag.ndsu.edu/pubs/plantsci/weeds/w-802.gif).
 

Flowering Period: April through October.
 

Habitat: Disturbed sites including fields, waste areas, roadsides, gardens, and pastures.
 

Conservation status: Not threatened.

Native status: Introduced to the United States from Europe.
 

Distribution: Distribution of Convolvulus arvensis in the United States. This species is found throughout in Kansas. From California Department of Food and Agriculture (http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/phpps/ipc/weedinfo/convolvulus_map.htm).

 

 

Visitors: Convolvulus arvensis attracts many species of flies and bees, including bumblebees and honeybees.

 

Ecological/Human Impact:
Field Bindweed is considered to be a noxious weed. It entwines and chokes other plant species, out-competing them and possibly decreasing habitat biodiversity. It is mildly toxic to grazing animals and a nuisance in agricultural fields. Besides mechanical methods of control, two insect species have been used to control its spread: the Bindweed Moth (Tyta luctuosa; released in Arizona, Iowa, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas) and the Bindweed Gall Mite (Aceria malherbae; released in Texas).

Video: Using Bindweed Gall Mites to Manage Field Bindweed

 


Etymology: Convolvulus comes from the Latin convolv which means 'twining', and arvensis is the Latin term for 'field'.

 

Links:
Illinois Wildflowers: http://www.illinoiswildflowers.info/weeds/plants/field_bindweed.htm

Center for Invasive Species: http://wiki.bugwood.org/Convolvulus_arvensis

YouTube: Using Bindweed Gall Mites to Manage Field Bindweed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=wh1dVcrsIU4
 

References:
Freeman, Craig C. and Schofield, Eileen K. 1991. Wildflowers of the Southern Great Plains. University Press of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. 80 pp.

Interactive Agricultural Ecological Atlas of Russia and Neighboring Countries. http://www.agroatlas.ru/en/content/weeds/Convolvulus_arvensis/.

California Department of Food and Agriculture. http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/phpps/ipc/weedinfo/convolvulus.htm.

 

Image Credits:
Convolvulus arvensis in the field. Photo by Alicia Oberg, 2011.

Convolvulus arvensis in the field. Photo by Alicia Oberg, 2011.

United States Distribution Map from California Department of Food and Agriculture http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/phpps/ipc/weedinfo/convolvulus_map.htm.

 

Submitted by: Alicia Oberg, July 2011.

Wichita State University
Generated on 2011. This website is continuously updated.
Comments can be sent to Mary Liz Jameson.
Designed by Bioadventures.