vID Devil weed/sinister flower/Invading Boston

dennis314 dennisn1dsNOdeSPAM at
Sun Jul 16 15:47:47 EST 2000

ID Devil weed/sinister flower/Invading Boston

Devil weed, Identify:

First noticed on chain link fence,
at top of 75 foot cliff by sea,
about 12 mi. N of Boston , MAin 1993
Very Interesting:
Climbing choking vine.
Perfect leaves resembling lilac shape and size in younger
may be 3 in wide 4 1/2 in base to tip if well established
in sunny place.

Clumps of 5 or 6 Quarter inch diameter flowers
in a 1" diameter arrays, appearing  along upper third of
Each flower has 5 triangular flat black petals framing
greenish yellow reproductive center which form
a perfect 5 pointed black star. viewed straight on.
Petals incline upward 25 degrees or so,
from a plane perpendicular to the stem.

A pod 1 1/2 to 3 inches long, tapered at both ends,
1/2 in dia max for largest.
Seeds ar very much like milkweed both in shape and size;
flat seed with sail that carries them inland.

First appeared in my yard about 1995.

Propagates laterally by root system also;
Typically there is a double node with sort of
"a fusible link" of weak stem
between a root node and a stem node.
Until I discovered this I had been happy
if I had gotten up the plant and its root node,
with up to 3  or 5 shoots otherwise ready to take off!!!

Lately I learned, on inspecting the remaining roots,
that the remnant node and roots are
the reason the plants seemed to bounce right back.

Local horticultural radio
personalities do not know what it is.  Who does.

It is spreading.  I  found some climbing on junipers and
in a supermarket parlking lot 25 miles south and about 1
mile from sea in 1998.

Help any clue what it is, where it native , or whom should
I ask.

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