American Bittersweet

Botanical Name: Celastrus scandens

Height: Potentially tall vine

Season of bloom: Late spring, not that you are likely to notice the small green flowers.

Growing Conditions: Sun, ordinary, well-drained soil – quite adaptable.

Wildlife benefits: Fruits are eaten by Robins and Bluebirds and other songbirds, and by Ruffed Grouse.

From Ottawa Valley or eastern Ontario sources: Yes

Remarks: Plants are either male or female. Only the females have the showy berries. Berries are poisonous to humans; leave them for the birds.

Similar species: An introduced species, Oriental Bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus)  is a noxious invasive.

For information on availability or to return to the list of plants: Plants.