Bindweed, Field, Convolvulus arvensis

Life Cycle

Perennial

Propagation

Reproducing by seed and by an underground root system.

Stems

Stems slender, smooth or pubescent or very finely hairy, usually twining or curling, prostrate or climbing on any nearby object (b).

Leaves

Leaves are alternate (1 per node), with short or long stalks, variable in form but commonly arrowhead-shaped with 2 basal lobes (c) and smooth margins, sometimes long and narrow (d), or broader (e) and nearly round except for the 2 basal lobes.

Flowers and Fruit

Flowers on long stalks (f) from axils of leaves, always with a pair of small, narrow, green bracts (g) on the flower stalk some distance below the flower. The flowers are with 5 small green sepals (h) and a white to pinkish funnel-shaped corolla 2-2.5cm in diameter when fully opened. The seedpods are roundish, about 5mm long containing 1 to 4 seeds each of which is about 3mm long, pear-shaped and 3-angled with 1 side rounded and with tiny grayish bumps. Flowers from mid-June until autumn.

Roots and Underground Structures

An extensively spreading and very persistent, whitish underground root system (a).

Habitat

Field bindweed occurs throughout Ontario in cultivated fields, gardens, lawns, roadsides, and waste places.

Distinguishing Features

It is distinguished from hedge bindweed, which also has perennial roots, by its smaller leaves, flowers usually not over 2.5cm in diameter, and the 2 small bracts near the middle of the flower stalk, these tiny bracts never enclosing the base of the flower. It is distinguished from Wild buckwheat by being perennial with extensively creeping, white, cord-like, fleshy roots which produce new shoots and form dense patches; by its white or pinkish, funnel-shaped flowers with long stalks, and by the absence of an ocrea (membranous sheath) surrounding the stem at the base of each leafstalk.

Biological Control

Gall mite (Aceria malherbae) Availability: http://www.mcclay-ecoscience.com/agents.htm for availability.


Figure #1.

Field bindweed. A. Plant reproducing from horizontally spreading root. B. Portion of flowering stem twining around an erect support.


Figure #2.

Cotyledon and first true leaves of a field bindweed seedling.


Figure #3.

Young seedling plant.


Figure #4.

The arrowhead shaped leaf of field bindweed.


Figure #5.

Mature flowering plant.


Figure #6.

Flowers of field bindweed.


Figure #7.

Field bindweed seeds.