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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Field Bindweed - Convolvulus arvensis

Noxious Weed: Priority 2B
Exotic Species (not native to Montana)

Global Rank: GNR
State Rank: SNA

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 0

External Links

General Description
Rhizomatous perennial. Stems pubescent, prostrate or twining, branched at the base, 20–100 cm long. Leaves glabrous, sagittate, cordate-based, mostly rounded at the tip, 1–5 cm long; petiole 5–25 mm long. Flowers solitary; peduncle 1–5 cm long with a pair of small bracts just below the flower; calyx 3–5 mm long, the segments obovate, overlapping; corolla white or pinkish, 15–25 mm long; stamens included. Capsule 4–7 mm long, 2-locular (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Convolvulus arvensis can be confused with several other members of the Convolvulaceae (Morning-glory family). Calystegia sepium is quite similar in appearance but can be distinguished by its larger leaves, flowers, and seeds, and by two large bracts inserted at the base of the flower. Calystegia spithamaeus is shorter than C. arvensis and is erect with oval leaves. Several species of Ipomoea resemble C. arvensis, but they can be distinguished by their annual habit, capitate stigma, longer sepals, and blue or purple corolla. Polygonum convolvulus (Polygonaceae) can be confused with C. arvensis due to its arrow-shaped leaves and twining stems but is distinguished by its annual habit and clusters of small green flowers in the leaf axils.

Species Range

Range Comments
Convolvulus arvensis is a native of Eurasia and was introduced to North America in the 1730s (Wiese and Phillips 1976). It spread westward, reaching Pennsylvania by 1812, Kansas by 1877, and all the western states by 1900 (Whitesides 1979). It was first reported in California near San Francisco in 1838 and now infests 1.8 million acres in the state (Rosenthal 1983). It is spread by sowing contaminated crop seed, planting nursery stock containing convolvulus roots, and seed or plant parts carried by animals and humans (Swan 1980).

Summary of Observations Submitted for Montana
Number of Observations: 848

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)


  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Best, K. F. 1963. Note on the extent of lateral spread of field bindweed. Can. J. Plant Sci. 43: 230-232.
    • Cronquist, A., A.H. Holmgren, N.H. Holmgren, J.L. Reveal, and P.K. Holmgren. 1984. Intermountain Flora: Vascular Plants of the Intermountain West, U.S.A. Vol. 4, Subclass Asteridae (except Asteraceae). Bronx, NY: New York Botanical Garden. 573 pp.
    • DeGennaro, F. P., and S. C. Weller. 1982. Field bindweed biotype studies in Indiana. Proc. N. Cent. Weed Control Conf. 37: 47-48.
    • DeGennaro, F. P., and S. C. Weller. 1984b. Growth and reproductive characteristics of field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) biotypes. Weed Sci. 32: 525-528.
    • Hickman, M. V., and D. G. Swan. 1983. Comparison of rhizomes to lateral roots of field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis L.) for seasonal variation in establishment. Proc. W. Soc. Weed Sci. 36: 77-81.
    • Holm, L.G., P. Donald, J.V. Pancho, and J.P. Herberger. 1977. The World's Worst Weeds: Distribution and Biology. The University Press of Hawaii: Honolulu, Hawaii. 609 pp.
    • Jordon, L. S., and J. L. Jordan. 1982. Effect of pre-chilling on Convolvulus arvensis L. seed coat and germination. Ann. Bot. 49: 421-423.
    • Lesica, P., M. T. Lavin, and P. F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Meyer, L. J. 1978. The influence of environment on growth and control of field bindweed. Proc. N. Cent. Weed Control Conf. 33: 141-142.
    • Munz, P.A., and D.D. Keck. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Univ. California Press, Berkeley, CA.
    • Phillips, W. M. 1978. Field bindweed: the weed and the problem. Proc. N. Cent. Weed Control Conf. 33: 140-141.
    • Rosenthal, S. S. 1983. Field bindweed in California: extent and cost of infestation. Calif. Agric. 37: 16-17.
    • Swan, D. G. 1980. Field bindweed, Convolvulus arvensis L. Washington State Univ. Coll. of Agric. Research Center Bull. 0888. Pullman, Washington.
    • Timmons, J. 1949. Duration of viability of bindweed seed under field conditions and experimental results in the control of bindweed seedlings. Agron. J. 41: 130-133.
    • Waddington, K. D. 1976. Foraging patterns of halictid bees at flowers of Convolvulus arvensis L. Psyche 83: 112-119.
    • Weaver, S. E., and W. R. Riley. 1982. The biology of Canadian weeds. 53. Convolvulus arvensis L. Can. J. Plant Sci. 62: 461-472.
    • Whitesides, R. E. 1979. Field bindweed: a growth stage indexing system and its relation to control with glyphosate. Ph.D. Thesis, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon.
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Field Bindweed — Convolvulus arvensis.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from