Parthenocissus quinquefolia | Virginia-creeper



Conservation status

Not Assessed

First reported in the wild



Invasive species - risk of Medium Impact

Introduction pathways - 1

Escape from Confinement

Introduction pathways subclass - 1

Ornamental purpose

Invasive score


NAPRA Ireland risk assessed


Species Biology


Vigorous deciduous vine; woody climber with a light brown stem up to 20m long; palmate leaves divided into 5 leaflets, dull green and hairy on underside; tendrils with adhesive tips for climbing; difficult to identify in winter (Booy et al., 2015). Can be confused with a number of different native and non-native species including P. inserta (nn), P. tricuspidata (nn), Hedera helix (ivy native) and various Clematis spp (both nn & native) (Booy et al., 2015).


May overgrow and compete with native plants. Host to a plant pathogen, Xylella fastidiosa, in its native range (Hopkins & Alderz, 1988). Due to rarity in Britain (Preston et al., 2004) and Ireland (Reynolds, 2002) there are no documented studies of its impact outside its native range.


Inland unvegetated or sparsely vegetated habitats; Regularly or recently cultivated agricultural, horticultural or domestic habitat; Constructed, industrial or other artificial habitats

Pathway and vector description

Widely sold as a garden plant along with P. inserta and P. tricuspidata, for which it can be confused.

Mechanism of impact


Broad environment


Habitat description

Grown in gardens from where it may spread it is most common in hedgerows and waste ground (Reynolds, 2002).

Species group


Native region

North America

Similar species

P. tricuspidata, P. inserta


World distribution(GBIF)

Irish distribution

Occasional - Rare, mainly found in the south of the country though this may be an artefact of recording effort.

Native distribution

Native of North America (Preston et al., 2004).

Temporal change

Date of first record category


Fifty year date category


Records submitted to Data Centre in 2022

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How can you help

Report any sightings to the National Biodiversity Data Centre..



Hopkins, D. L., & Adlerz, W. C. (1988). Natural hosts of Xylella fastidiosa in Florida. Plant Disease, 72(5), 429-431. Reynolds, S.C.P. (2002) A catalogue of alien plants in Ireland. National Botanic Gardens. Glasnevin, Dublin. Preston, C.D., Pearman, D. A. & Dines, T. D. (2002). New atlas of the British and Irish flora. An atlas of the vascular plants of Britain, Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, Oxford University Press. Stace, C. (1997). New Flora of the British Isles 2nd Edition. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Booy, O., Wade, M. & Roy, H. (2015) A Field Guide to Invasive Plants & Animals in Britain. Bloomsbury.

CABI Datasheet