Mile-a-minute vine has invaded the northeastern and mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. This plant has been observed in seven North Carolina counties: Alleghany, Gates, Guilford, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Rockingham and Watauga. It commonly invades open fields, woodland edges, roadsides, wetlands, and stream banks. Mile-a-minute prefers low, wet land in full sun. It produces many seeds which are dispersed by birds and small animals. Fruits also disperse through the water.
It is much easier to control an invasive species when management begins durign early stages of infestations. So, please watch out for mile-a-minute vine and report any infestations to the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Weed Specialist at 1-800-206-9333.
Mile-a-minute vine forms dense mats of tangled stems. The leaves are triangular shaped and grow alternately along the stem. The leaves are barbed along the underside. The stems are also barbed. Stems redden as they age and have characteristic leafy circular structures (called ‘ocreae’) from which flowers emerge. The flowers are small, white, and inconspicuous. The plant fruits from July through the fall. Fruits are metallic blue, segmented, and grow in clusters. Each fruit segment contains a small black seed.
Fact Sheet: Mile-a-Minute Vine
Identification and Management: Rick Iverson - Managing Mile-a-Minute Vine (Persicaria perfoliata) in North Carolina
Photo credit: Leslie J. Mehrhoff, University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org