Convolvulus L.


Latin convolvere — to twine.

Annual or perennial scrambling or twining herbs and shrubs, sometimes woody and/or with a milky latex. Leaves entire. Flowers in axillary or terminal clusters, sometimes solitary, with small leafy bracts that do not enclose the calyx. Corolla funnel-shaped, the mid-petal line often a different colour. Stigma with linear, thread-like or club-shaped lobes. Fruit a dry capsule containing mostly 4 seeds.

A number of species have become difficult weeds to eradicate.

C. arvensis L. is a widespread invasive Eurasian weed with white or pink funnel-shaped, scented flowers to 2.5 cm long; C. cantabrica L. is a perennial from S Europe with stalkless leaves and pink flowers; C. erubescens Sims, Pink Bindweed (Blushing Bindweed), is native to all states and has toothed, lobed or divided leaves; C. floridus L. f. from the Canary Islands is a woody shrub or climber with leaves to over 10 cm long and flowers to about 1 cm wide in many-flowered terminal clusters, white or pale pink.

Seeds, softwood cuttings and sometimes layers of woody species, and division.

C. floridus has roots that are the source of an essential oil; C. scammonia, Scammony, is the source of a purgative medicine.

Mostly twining plants or small shrubs with linear to oblong stigmas and bracts that are smaller than the sepals.

About 100 species, cosmopolitan but mostly temperate.

Source: Spencer, R. (2002). Convolvulaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 4. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 3. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

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kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Magnoliopsida
superorder     Asteranae
order      Solanales
family       Convolvulaceae
Higher taxa
Subordinate taxa
species         Convolvulus cneorum L.
species         Convolvulus sabatius Viv.