Virginia Tech Dendrology

wintercreeper Celastraceae Euonymus fortunei (Turcz.) Hand.-Maz. Listen to the Latin symbol: EUFO5
Leaf: Opposite, evergreen to semi-evergreen, 1 to 2 inches long, elliptical (shapes vary with cultivars), finely serrated, dark green with lighter veins (some cultivars variegated), lighter beneath.
Flower: Perfect, inconspicuous (1/4 inch), creamy green or yellow-green appear in small bunches in leaf axils in summer.
Fruit: Dry capsules (1/3 inch) that split open to reveal small orange seeds, ripen in fall and persist into winter.
Twig: Slender, green, slightly angled; buds pointed, green to reddish green. Aerial roots present when climbing.
Bark: Light brown to reddish brown, rough with numerous aerial rootlets when climbing.
Form: Variable depending on cultivar; most are a climbing vine but can be a shrub or semi-shrub; climbing forms often escape into woodlands and can reach up to 25 feet.
Looks like: spreading euonymus - English ivy - climbing hydrangea
leaf flower fruit twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Euonymus fortunei is planted in the USDA hardiness zones shown above and may seed into the landscape. See states reporting wintercreeper.
External Links: USDA Plants Database
All material © 2017 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson