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NC Native Plant Society:
Plant Details

Smilax herbacea

Common Carrionflower, Carrion-vine

Scientific Name:

Smilax herbacea

Genus:

Smilax

Species Epithet:

herbacea

Common Name:

Common Carrionflower, Carrion-vine

Plant Type

Herbaceous_Vine

Life Cycle

Annual (Herbs Only)

Plant Family

Smilacaceae (Greenbriar Family)

Native/Alien:

NC Native

Invasive Status:

(*Key)

Size:

1-3 ft., 3-6 ft.

Bloom Color(s):

Yellow, Green

Light:

Sun - 6 or more hours of sun per day, Part Shade - 2 to 6 hours of sun per day

Soil Moisture:

Moist

Bloom Time:

May, June

Growing Area:

Mountains, Piedmont, Sandhills

Habitat Description:

Moist deciduous forests. Common in NC Mountains and Piedmont, uncommon in the Sandhills, rare or absent in the Coastal Plain.

Leaf Arrangement:

Alternate

Leaf Retention:

Deciduous

Leaf Type:

Leaves veined, not needle-like or scale-like

Leaf Form:

Simple

Life Cycle:

Annual (Herbs Only)

Wildlife Value:

Has some wildlife value

Landscape Value:

Suitable for home landscapes

State Rank:

S5: Secure (*Key)

Global Rank:

G5 - Secure (*Key)

Notes:

This species lacks thorns. The inflorescence is a rounded cluster of yellowish-green flowers, with an odor like decaying meat; it is pollinated by carrion flies. Dioecious (male and female flowers on separate plants).

Smilax lasioneura and Smilax pulverulenta have recently been split from Smilax herbacea.

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Links:

USDA PLANTS Database Record

https://auth1.dpr.ncparks.gov/flora/species_account.php

https://plants.ces.ncsu.edu/plants/smilax-herbacea/

https://nc.audubon.org/conservation/bird-friendly-communities/bird-friendly-native-plants

https://gobotany.nativeplanttrust.org/species/smilax/herbacea/



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