Scientific Name: Celastrus orbiculatus

Common Name: Oriental bittersweet

Other Common Names: Oriental bittersweet, Asian or Asiatic bittersweet

Synonyms: Celastrus orbiculata

Habit: It is a climbing, woody vine that can suffocate trees and spreads by seeds and sprouting of roots.

Leaves: Alternate, simple round to oval leaves are 2 - 4 inches long, serrated, and come to a blunt tip. The top is green and the bottom is often paler.

Identifying Characteristics: Flowers and fruit end to cluster together and leaves are often smaller than native bittersweet. American bittersweet often has larger, elliptical leaves and the fruit appears at the end of the stem while the fruit in oriental bittersweet appears up and down the stem with the leaves.

Flower Seed Head: Few, green, small flowers that are smaller than the adjoined leaf.

Seed Fruit: Orange berries that appear in clusters and are about 1 cm long.

Where Found: Found in woods thickets and maybe pastures.

  • Life cycle: perennial

  • Milky sap: Not Present

  • Plant type: Vine

  • Thorns: Not Present

  • Plant family: Celastraceae

  • Leaf arrangement: alternate

  • Leaf shape: oval; round

  • Ochrea: Not Present

  • Leaf margin: entire

  • Stem hairs: no hairs; has hairs

  • Flower color: green

  • Growth habit: vine

  • Stem: round or oval

  • Leaf structure: simple

  • Leaf hairs: no hairs

  • Flower diameter: pencil

  • Flower symmetry: not symmetrical

  • Root structure: fibrous; taproot

  • Leaf stalk: shorter than leaf