Landscape Plants of the Upper Midwest

Engelman Virginia Creeper

{Picture of Engelman Virginia Creeper}

Plant Information

  • Plant Type: Vine
  • Scientific Name: Parthenocissus quinquefolia 'Engelmannii' Play audio of plant name
  • Family: Virginia Creeper
  • Zone: 3
  • Habit: Hold-fasts
  • Culture:

    Very adaptable. Full sun to shade. Climbs by means of holdfasts.

  • Notes:

    A handsome and durable vine that once established will grow rapidly, and if allowed reach considerable size. The 5-parted leaves turn a brilliant red in September and then drop revealing small blue berries. Although able to climb masonry walls, its holdfasts are relatively weak and may be pulled from the wall by strong winds.

  • How vines climb:

    The means by which vines climb can be divided into two broad categories: those that twine around a supporting structure, and those that hold onto structures by use of holdfasts.

    Twining: Twining vines wrap around a support using tendrils, petioles or the stem of the vine. These vines require a support structure that facilitates twining such as a fence, arbor or trellis. When these vines become overgrown they can be renewed by cutting the entire plant back severely in early spring.

    Holdfasts: This group of vines attach using holdfasts or aerial roots, structures that fasten the vine stem by sticking directly to a structure. These vines can affix to almost any surface, but are best used on masonry. They are not recommended on wood structures as they create a moist environment that can lead to rot, and the holdfasts are difficult to remove and may damage the wood

  • Pruning:Pruning animation

    When overgrown, this vine may be renewed by cutting it back to 1' - 1 1/2' above the ground level just above a few strong buds.

    Rigorous pruning such as this should only be done when the vine is dormant, late fall to early spring.

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Landscape Plants of the Upper Midwest

Bill Hoch, Associate Professor
Montana State University

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