En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - September 01, 2011

From: Norfolk, VA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Identification, Vines
Title: Plant identification of vine in Virginia
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Have vine that has small 3 pointed leaves somewhat like a grape but only an inch or 2 long. Adult fruit is black or purple egg shaped and only 3/4 of an inch long. Fruit is single in the middle of the vine not bunched like a grape. Also has small yellow flowers.

ANSWER:

The description of your plant sounds like Melothria pendula (Guadeloupe cucumber).  The fruit turns black as it becomes mature and is mildly toxic.  Here is another description of the plant from Wildflowers of the Southeastern U. S.  and lots more photos from Southeastern Flora.

If this doesn't sound like your plant and you have photos of it, you might want to visit our Plant Identification page to find links to several plant identification forums that accept photos for identification.

You can also search for Virginia native vines yourself in our Native Plant Database.  Under COMBINATION SEARCH select 'Virginia' under Select State or Province and 'Vine' under Habit (general appearance).  You can also make selections under other categories if they are appropriate.

 

From the Image Gallery


Guadeloupe cucumber
Melothria pendula

Guadeloupe cucumber
Melothria pendula

Guadeloupe cucumber
Melothria pendula

More Vines Questions

Native vine for privacy fence in Tennessee
September 29, 2008 - I am looking for a vine for privacy that grows in width not up; thru a standard 4' chain link fence. Colorfull. Can you help?
view the full question and answer

Problem with acanthus in Vancouver BC
May 16, 2010 - My girlfriend's Mom just planted an Acanthus in her garden. In the morning, it apparently stands up tall, but in the evening it bends over until the the leaves are lying in the dirt. She's concerned...
view the full question and answer

Vine for Patio Wall in D.C.
June 03, 2013 - I have a concrete patio wall 4 feet tall and 9 feet long in Washington, D.C. The wall runs east to west and there is a patio above it. I am looking for vines to cover it so that I would not have to lo...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting honeysuckle bush in Illinois
April 18, 2009 - Want to transplant 3 honeysuckle shrubs 10 to 12' tall this month, although not the best time. Please advise.
view the full question and answer

Should grape vines be covered in winter from San Antonio
February 07, 2011 - Do I need to cover grape vines in winter?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center