American bittersweet Celastraceae Celastrus scandens
Leaf:Alternate, simple, elliptical to ovate, pointed tip, 2 to 5 inches long, finely serrated, somewhat rounded teeth.
Flower:Inconspicuous, pale yellowish-green, in terminal clusters, appearing in late spring.
Fruit:Very attractive, capsules in clusters which when opened expose a bright orange seed surrounded by orange scales, 1/3 inch across; ripen in the fall and are visible throughout the winter.
Twig:Twiny, light brown, with small pointy buds at nearly right angles to the stems. No tendrils or aerial roots present.
Bark:Brown, initially smooth, later corky with diamond-shaped patterns, much later becomes finely scaly.
Form:Climbing vine, with an open, spiraling pattern. Forms dense thickets along fences. Some stems may become several inches in diameter.