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Star shaped leaves


Round green fruit

 

 

Echinocystis lobata

Common Name: Wild Cucumber
Family: Cucurbitaceae


Description:  This annual herb grows as a vine and has large star shaped leaves and bunches of white flowers. The fruiting bodies are round with soft spikes on them.
Leaves: 
The leaves are up to 6 inches long. They have from 3 to 7 sharp triangular points and are green in color.
Flowers:
The flowers are greenish white and have 6 petals. They are often found growing in clusters along the vine.
Seeds:
 
The fruit is green and inflated. It can be up to 2 inches long and is covered in soft prickles.
Stem:  The stem divides into forking tendrils used which are used in climbing.
Branching Pattern:
  Alternate
Height: up to 15 feet long
Conditions/Habitat/Kind of Forest: This vine can be seen growing in waste grounds, thickets, floodplain forest and along stream banks. It requires moist soil to grow.
Known Wildlife Interactions:
The flowers are insect pollinated.
Range: It can be found through out U.S.A. proper and in southern Canada.
Conservation Status-US/ World Wide:  Not threatened in the U.S. or globally.
Uses (Human): None known

References:

Connecticut Wildflowers.  January 20, 2006.  Connecticut Botanical Society.  Accessed:  April 11, 2006. <http://www.ct-botanical-society.org/galleries/polygonumsagi.html>

Plants for a Future.  June 2004.  Accessed: April 11, 2006.  <http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Polygonum+sagittatum>

The Pennsylvania Flora Project.  Botany Department, Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania.  Accessed:  January 20, 2006. <http://www.paflora.org>

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species <http://www.iucnredlist.org>

Wisconsin Plant of the Week. October 14, 2002. Accessed April 11, 2006. <http://www.klines.org/joanne/Archive/Plant_Pages/plant_pages_29.html>

Chadde, Steve W. A Great Lakes Wetland Flora. Pocketflora Press. 2002. pg.196

Redington, Charles B. Plants in Wetlands. Redington Field Guides. 1994. pg 356

Peterson, Roger T., MicKenny, Margaret. Wildflowers: Northeast/ North-Central Amercia. Peterson Field Guides.1996. pg 76

This page was created by: A. Coiro, Muhlenberg College
Photos by: L. Rosenberg, edited by N. Smith
Last updated 04/25/06