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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Herbaceous Greenbrier - Smilax lasioneura
Other Names:  Smilax herbacea

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S4
* (see State Rank Reason below)

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 8

External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Smilax lasioneura occurs in eastern Montana where it grows in woodlands, riparian forests, and thickets. Populations appear stable, can be common in certain areas, and few threats have been identified. However, current data on population locations, sizes, and threats is needed.
  • Details on Status Ranking and Review
    Herbaceous Greenbrier (Smilax lasioneura) Conservation Status Review
    Review Date =
General Description
PLANTS: Herbaceous annuals that grow as erect to ascending vines (Lesica et al. 2012; FNA 2014). Stems 30–120 cm. Tendrils from the leaf axils.

LEAVES: Simple, petiolate, alternate. Petioles are shorter than the blade (FNA 2014). Leaf blades are ovate, cordate to truncate, 5–9 cm long, net-veined, puberulent beneath, and pale green beneath (Lesica et al. 2012).

INFLORESCENCE: Axillary umbels with numerous flowers; peduncles 3–8 cm. Flowers unisexual, star-shaped, green; tepals 6, separate, spreading, oblong, 3–4 mm long; stamens 6, shorter than the tepals, reduced in female flowers; ovary 3-celled, superior; stigmas 3. Fruit a 3- or 6-seeded, blue berry 6–10 mm long (Lesica et al. 2012).

Our plants are variety lasioneura (Hook.) A. DC.

Flowering May through June (FNA 2014).

Range Comments
SK to ON south to WY, TX, MS and FL (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 31

(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)


Plants growing in southern humid areas tend to be larger than those from northern areas (FNA 2014).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Flora of North America Editorial Committee. 2002. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Vol. 26. Magnoliophyta: Liliidae: Liliales and Orchidales. New York, NY: Oxford Univ. Press. xxvi + 723 pp.
    • Lesica, P., M. T. Lavin, and P. F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Herbaceous Greenbrier — Smilax lasioneura.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from