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Parthenocissus heptaphylla (Sevenleaf creeper)
Carr, Bill

Parthenocissus heptaphylla

Parthenocissus heptaphylla (Buckley) Britton ex Small

Sevenleaf Creeper, Seven-leaf Creeper

Vitaceae (Grape Family)

Synonym(s): Ampelopsis heptaphylla, Psedera heptaphylla, Vitis heptaphylla

USDA Symbol: PAHE4

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Resembling Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) but much less common, limited to the Edwards Plateau and Lampasas Cut Plain of Central Texas, where it is endemic; tendrils without discs, leaflets narrower, thicker, and shorter than in Virginia Creeper, up to 2 1/2 inches long, and turning color later in the fall. Leaflets usually 7 in number, but may be 5 or 6.

Seven-leaf Creeper looks very much like and has similar growing requirements to Virginia Creeper, the latter having five leaflets instead of seven. Vine found on soil underlain with limestone. Both species show orange and red fall color when grown in the sun. May be used as a climbing vine or trailing groundcover, though it is less likely to climb up walls the way Virginia Creeper does because it lacks adhesive discs. Reported to be a less aggressive grower than Virginia Creeper.


From the Image Gallery

9 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Vine
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Palmate
Leaf Shape: Oblanceolate
Leaf Pubescence: Glabrous
Leaf Apex: Acuminate
Leaf Base: Cuneate
Leaf Texture: Smooth
Breeding System: Flowers Unisexual , Monoecious
Inflorescence: Corymb
Fruit Type: Berry
Size Notes: Stems scrambling to twining, up to about 30 feet long.
Leaf: Green, turning red or orange in fall
Autumn Foliage: yes
Flower: Flowers in 4-8 cm corymbs
Fruit: Dark blue to black 1 cm

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Red , Green
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun
Bloom Notes: Greenish to reddish green.


Native Distribution: Endemic to Edwards Plateau and Lampasas Cut Plain of central Texas: Bell, Lampasas, Williamson, Brown, Hamilton, and Burnet counties.
Native Habitat: Climbing on vegetation in rocky or sandy soils in woods and river bottoms.

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Conditions Comments: Seven-leaf creeper has similar growing requirements to Virginia creeper.


Use Ornamental: A groundcover or twining climber for central Texas, with glossier leaves and bushier stature than, but otherwise similar appearance to Virginia Creeper.
Interesting Foliage: yes
Attracts: Birds
Deer Resistant: Moderate


Propagation Material: Softwood Cuttings
Description: Roots easily from softwood stem cuttings approximately pencil-width. Cut in spring or early in summer for fall.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - Austin, TX
Texas Discovery Gardens - Dallas, TX
Brackenridge Field Laboratory - Austin, TX
Jacob's Well Natural Area - Wimberley, TX

Herbarium Specimen(s)

NPSOT 0203 Collected Apr. 6, 1992 in Comal County by Mary Beth White

1 specimen(s) available in the Digital Herbarium

Web Reference

Webref 3 - Flora of North America (2014) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.

Additional resources

USDA: Find Parthenocissus heptaphylla in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Parthenocissus heptaphylla in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Parthenocissus heptaphylla


Record Modified: 2022-10-07
Research By: DIEHL, WFS, GDG

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