Content Detail

Porcelain vine is a woody vine that produces berries in beautiful shades of purple and bright blue. Unfortunately these fruits contain seeds and the plant self-seeds aggressively, making it weedy. This plant is under observation and may be listed on official invasive species lists in the near future. Review of risks should be undertaken before selecting this vine for planting sites.

  • Family (English) Grape
  • Family (botanic) Vitaceae
  • Tree or plant type Vine
  • Foliage Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Large plant (more than 24 inches)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 4, Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago), Zone 7, Zone 8
  • Soil preference Dry soil, Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances Alkaline soil, clay soil, Dry sites, Occasional drought
  • Season of interest late summer, early fall
  • Flower color and fragrance Inconspicuous
  • Shape or form Vining
  • Growth rate Fast

Size and Method of Climbing:

Porcelain vine is vigorous and may grow up to 25 feet long. The vine climbs by twining and tendrils. Twining vines climb by twisting their stems or leaf stalks around a support and vines with tendrils climb by twisting those tendrils around a support. This type of vine grows well on trellises, arbors, wires, or chain-link fences.

Native geographic location and habitat:

Native to Japan, Korea, and China.

Leaf description:

The leaves are simple and alternate. Leaf shape is variable. It may have three lobes and resemble grape leaves or it may have 5 lobes and be a bit more intricate. Fall color is a mild yellow at best.

Flower description:

Small green flowers that are not showy are produced in summer.

 Fruit description:

Fruit is a small berry that shows a range of colors from lilac to purple to blue and turquoise. Fruit clusters will have berries of different colors at the same time. Showy in late summer and fall.

Plant care:

Full sun is best for fruit production, but this vine also tolerates a fair amount of shade. It also tolerates a wide range of conditions, but wet soils should be avoided.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances:

Japanese beetles are a major defoliator of this vine. Fungal leaf spots occur from time to time. This vine becomes weedy through self-seeding.

Variegated porcelain vine (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata ‘Elegans’):

Foliage is variegated and more deeply lobed than the species.


Your support is vital to the Arboretum, where the power of trees makes a positive impact on people’s lives.

Make a gift