Native to the southeastern United States, and found from Texas to Florida, north to Illinois and Pennsylvania.
A beautiful perennial vine that is extremely invasive in its growth. Sandy, well-drained soils are preferred habitats, as well as sunny locations. The plants climb by means of tendrils, potentially growing well up into trees or over the top of low-growing vegetation. The fruit is edible, and foliage has long been used in many medicinal ways, although it contains toxic alkaloids that potentially may cause harm if ingested. Propagation is from seeds.
The distinctive feature of this plant is its large, showy flowers. These may be several inches in diameter with a ray of 10 to 12 large purple petals that surround a disc of long, thin petals growing from the center of the flower. The stamens are large and protrude on a single, central stalk which then forms the stamens star-like at the top. The large leaves are up to 6 inches long and are deeply divided into 3 lance-shaped lobes.
Characteristicts Important to Control:
Physical removal may be possible for plants not yet completely out of control in their growth.