Polygonum cilinode

Fringed Bindweed

Fringed Bindweed, Photo © by Earl J.S. Rook
Fringed Bindweed
Photo © by Earl J.S. Rook

Flora, fauna, earth, and sky...
The natural history of the northwoods


  • Polygonum, from the Greek, polus (polys), "much, many", and gonu (gonu), "the knee or joint of grasses", hence "many jointed", a reference to the stem structure of this genus.
  • cilinode, from the Latin cilium, "fringed"
  • Common name from
  • Other common names include Fringed Black Bindweed, Mountain Bindweed,


  • Kingdom Plantae, the Plants
    • Division Magnoliophyta, the Angiosperms (flowering plants)
      • Class Magnoliopsida, the Dicotyledons
      • Subclass Caryophyllidae
        • Order Polygonales
          • Family Polygonaceae, Knotweeds
            • Genus Polygonum, the Knotweeds or Smartweeds, a highly variable genus, which includes annual or perennial forbs and shrubs. Some species are viney. The leaves are usually simple and alternate. The pink, green, or white flowers have jointed stalks and stems have swollen nodes.
  • Taxonomic Serial Number: 20887
  • Also known as Bilderdykia cilinodis, Fallopia cilinodis, Reynoutria cilinodis, Tiniaria cilinodis


  • A ¼, ½, ¾, º, é
  • An erect/twining perennial forb, creeping vine.
  • Leaves
  • Stem
  • Roots
  • Flowers
    • Sepals
    • Petals
    • Stamens
    • Pistils
    • Ovary superior (within blossom) inferior (below flower)
  • Fruit a three- or four-angled achene.
  • Seed


  • Identifiable as
  • Distinguished from
  • Field Marks


  • Alaska to Newfoundland,


  • Boreal Forest; Bracken Grassland; Cliff; Northern Lowland Forest; Sand Dunes;


  • Fire top-kills smartweed. Smartweed can reproduce by seed or sprout from rhizomes following fire. Smartweeds usually sprout from seeds following fire. They tend to reproduce more after severe burns than after light burns.
  • P. cilinode, an annual, has been known to colonize severely burned sites in the forests of northeastern Minnesota. August wildfires in the pine forests of northern Minnesota resulted in an increase of P. cilinode from zero percent cover on the unburned sites to 36 percent ground cover on the burned sites


  • Trees:
  • Shrubs:
  • Herbs:
  • Ground Covers:
  • Mammals:
  • Birds:




  • Sexually by seed
  • Flowers
  • Assexually by


  • By rhizome division,


  • Hardy to USDA Zone 3 (average minimum annual temperature -40ºF)
  • Cultural Requirements
    • Light:
    • Soil:
    • Water:
    • Spacing:
    • Fertilization:
  • Size 12"-18"W x 12"-18"H
  • Growth rate
  • Good for
  • Cultivars include
    • variety 'Alba', with
  • Cultivars and species available by mail order from specialty suppliers or at local nurseries



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Last Updated on 19 October, 2002