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BLACK BINDWEED

Fallopia convolvulus

Dock & Knotweed Family [Polygonaceae]

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category
category8Climbers
category
category8Deciduous
status
statusZarchaeophyte
flower
flower8white
inner
inner8pink
morph
morph8zygo
petals
petalsZ0
stem
stem8angular

13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
A low scrambling plant which entwines itself around anything and everything handy. The stems can reach 1m in length (rarely 1.5m).


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
It even entangles with itself; it knows no different.


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
Stems often purplish-red, square or angular, with grooves. Flowers small and in small isolated bunches along the twisting stem.


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
Both stems, flowers and leaves covered in very-short tiny hairs.


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
Flower structure at first puzzling. Before opening only the 3 sepals are visible, set at 120° to eack other and looking a little winged [lower two flowers].


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
An opened flower. The three sepals, set at 120° to each other, are winged on the edge and strongly cupped. Set at 60° are only 2 shorter and oval petals (the lowest one not quite yet in the intended place but nestled instead within the lower sepal cup). The flowers are therefore zygomorphic rather than actinomorphic. There is a style in the centre with a yellow-green discoidal stigma which can be divided (it is here).


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
A fast-growing climbing or prostrate annual which inhabits arable fields as a weed, here in an arable field but pulled away from the vegetation it was intermingling with for clarity.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Leaves in pairs on long thin stem.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Ace of Spades shaped leaves.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Flowers small in loose spikes.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
The flowers are similar to those on Docks, and have four small greenish-white tepals (bottom left)


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Tepals green with narrow white borders (lower left).


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Tepals often tinged reddish in central portions.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Leaves admixed with flowers are tapered lanceolate, rather than ace-of-spades shaped.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
The stalks of the leaves where they adjoin the main stem often have the appearance of being knotted there as the stalks entwine about.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
Several flowers grow close to the junction of the leafes with stem, adding to the 'knotted' appearance there.


24th Aug 2011, Rainford, Merseyside. Photo: © RWD
An Ace-of-Spade shaped leaf, although leaf shape varies a bit.


13th Sept 2018, arable field, Upholland, Wigan, Lancs Photo: © RWD
The leaves are ovate-triangular in shape with cordate (heart-shaped) to sagittate (with two backwardly directed triangular lobes, altogether arrow-shaped) bases and obtuse (rounded) to acuminate (tapering concavely to a point) at the tip.


Many similarities to : the rarer Copse Bindweed (Fallopia dumentorum) which grows up to three times longer at 3m, but the tepals have a wider white margin.

Varieties : (Calystegia convolvulus var. subalatum)

Slight resemblance to : Russian Vine (Fallopia baldschuanica) but that grows to 10m or more climbing vigorously over anything upon which it can obtain purchase, but the flowers are white, plentiful and in showy trusses.

No relation to : Calystegia genus Bindweeds such as Hedge Bindweed (Calystegia sepium) , Large Bindweed (Calystegia silvatica) , Hairy Bindweed (Calystegia pulchra) or Sea Bindweed (Calystegia soldanella) [plants with similar names].

Not a true Bindweed such as those belonging to the Convolvulaceae family like Sea Bindweed (Calystegia soldanella) and others belonging to the Calystegia genus, but has similar Ace-of-Spade shaped leaves, and can also climb, but it also sprawls if it finds nothing to clamber up. Fruit a small dull-black triangular 4-5mm long nut on a very short 2mm stalk.

Black Bindweed is a Metallophyte with the potential to absorb 280ppm by weight of copper via its fine roots.

Three previously unknown flavonoids have been isolated from Black Bindweed, Falloconvalin A, Falloconvalin B and Quercetin-3-O-(2-E-sinapoxyl)-glucopyranoside [although your Author can now find no other source to back this up, perhaps they have differing common names].

But the Flavans and ProAnthoCyanivones(?!) IsoVitexin, Vitexin, IsoOrientin, Orientin, Apigenin, and the 6,8-glycoside and 6,8-diglycosides of Luteolin were found in Black Bindweed [as well as in Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum), Copse Bindweed (Fagopyrum dumetorum)].


  Fallopia convolvulus  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Polygonaceae  

Distribution
 family8Dock & Knotweed family8Polygonaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Fallopia
Fallopia
(Knotweeds)

BLACK BINDWEED

Fallopia convolvulus

Dock & Knotweed Family [Polygonaceae]

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