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Japanese honeysuckle is an attractive plant, but under the Illinois Exotic Weed Act, it cannot be sold in Illinois. It is also considered invasive in many other states. The information provided here is more for identification purposes rather than a guide to plant selection. This plant is NOT recommended.

  • Family (English) Honeysuckle
  • Family (botanic) Caprifoliaceae
  • Tree or plant type Ground cover, Vine
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Low-growing plant (under 6 inches), Large plant (more than 24 inches)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily), Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 4, Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago), Zone 7, Zone 8, Zone 9
  • Flower color and fragrance Fragrant, White, Yellow
  • Shape or form Vining
  • Growth rate Fast

Size and Method of Climbing:

Japanese honeysuckle can grow 30 feet or more vertically, but can completely cover the ground in large areas as well. It is a twining vine.

 Native geographic location and habitat:

Native to Japan, Korea, and China

Leaf description:

The opposite leaves are 2 to 3 inches long and green to dark green. Leaves are oval to oblong, with entire edges and hairs on both upper and lower surfaces. In northern climates, the leaves are deciduous and in the south they are evergreen to semi-evergreen.

Flower description:

The white flowers are irregularly shaped and tubular. As they age, they fade to yellow. They are borne in pairs and are very fragrant.

Fruit description:

Fruit are black berries.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances:

Japanese honeysuckle is an invasive plant in many areas and is illegal to sell in Illinois.


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