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FIELD BINDWEED - Convolvulus arvensis L.

Convolvulaceae - (Morningglory family)

You will know field Bindweed as a morning glory type plant loaded with 1 inch white to light pink flowers. 
The sprout is two bright green, oval shaped leaves that are notched opposite the stem, the secondary leaves become somewhat heart or arrow shaped. 

This is a very fast growing plant and has many creeping or climbing shoots in just a day or so, most will get four foot long or more.  If the shoots find anything they can cling to (as on a trellis) they proceed to twirl and climb upward, reaching for some other avenue if the present one is too short. 
The flowers wilt and drop off leaving a drying capsule generally with 4 small black seeds that can survive for up to 50 years in the soil. 

Roots may penetrate down 20 ft., extensive horizontal roots support the thick flowering mat above.  Broken roots will sprout new plants. 

This weed thrives into the 10,000 ft altitudes, successfully over-taking whole areas. 

Eradicate by spraying or grazing with goats; plowing or roto-tilling will increase the number of plants.  It is very difficult to control once entrenched. 

The following is courtesy of Weeds of the West:

Field bindweed is a perennial with an extensive root system, often climbing or forming dense tangled mats. Stems are prostrate, 1 to 4 feet long. Leaves alternate, more or less arrowhead-shaped, pointed or blunt lobes at the base. The flowers are bell-or trumpet-shaped, white to pinkish, approximately 1 inch in diameter with 2 small bracts located 1 inch below the flower. Fruit is a small, round capsule, usually 4-seeded.

Field bindweed was introduced from Europe and has become a widespread and serious weed problem in all parts of the U.S. except the southeastern states. In the western United States, it is extensively distributed in cultivated fields and waste places. Because of its remarkable adaptability to different environmental conditions, it may be found at altitudes as high as 10,000 feet. It is a difficult weed to eradicate because of the long, deep taproot which can penetrate the soil to a depth of 10 feet and which gives rise to numerous long lateral roots. Seeds remain viable for up to 50 years. The flowering period is from late June until frost in the fall.

Non-standard names: creeping Jenny, morningglory, perennial morningglory.
(Courtesy of Weeds of the West)

 

 

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