Monday, May 7, 2012

First Angularfruit Milkvine (Matelea gonocarpos) Flowers Of The Season

May 5th, 2012. After we’d completed our run from Saxon to Broad yesterday, we headed down to Clark Hill Wildlife Management Area in McDuffie County to look for wildflowers in general and for milkvines (Matelea sp.). We didn’t see many on our run to the end of the road, but spotted a number on the way back out. The leaves on one of the vines we saw had slightly ‘frilled’ margin (which I forgot to photograph) so I walked over to take a closer look. The vines were matelea vines and as I looked more closely I spotted…

a cluster of buds. The buds of the Angularfruit Milkvine are glossy and concave in profile compared with those of the…

Buds. Maroon Carolina Milkvine (Matelea carolinensis)

Maroon Carolina Milkvine (Matelea carolinensis). It’s easy to identify Angularfruit Milkvine plants in this area when buds begin to develop.

Clusters of flowers. We have always found green flowers with purple centers. In some areas, flowers are green with no purple color.

A closer view of one of the flowers. These flowers have a matte surface. Newly opened flowers we have found in Greene County…

have a glossy surface.

Matelea gonocarpos seed pod. If a flower is pollinated, a seed pod will develop in 4 to 5 months.

The seed pod gradually develops a wrinkled surface as the seeds ripen

A ripe seed pod has split open to release seeds.

The seeds - enlarged many times here – are about ¼-inch in diameter.

An empty seed pod we spotted in the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge in April. The ribs of the angularfruit pod are clearly visible. It’s easy to distinguish these pods from the spiny pods of milkvines like the Maroon Carolina Milkweed (Matelea carolinensis).

Matelea gonocarpos is known as the Angularfruit Milkvine or Eastern Anglepod. It is native to the United States where it may be found from Maryland to Illinois, west to Kansas and south to Texas. In Georgia, it has been documented in several counties not including Greene or Jones counties where we have found it; it occurs in several sites in the Piedmont NWR.

The Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) lists Matelea gonocarpos and Matelea gonocarpa as accepted names but lists Matelea gonocarpos with the common name Angularfruit Milkvine. Both names appear in different plant lists.

Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:

- Southeastern Flora: Matelea gonocarpa (Angularfruit milkvine)

- Name that Plant. Natural and Naturalized Plants of the Carolinas and Georgia: Matalea gonocarpos (Eastern Anglepod)

- Missouri plants: Matelea gonocarpa

- USDA Plants Database: Matelea gonocarpos (Angularfruit Milkvine)

Related Posts
- Maroon Carolina Milkvine (Matelea carolinensis)

- Zen: Angularfruit milkvine (Matelea gonocarpa)


Anonymous said...

Thanks for your photos and information. I found, what I think is, matelea gonocarpos near my house yesterday. It is a vine growing in my catalpa tree and there were 3 seed pods on the ground. Thanks again. jb

JSK said...

Glad the photos were helpful.


Hi, where can i buy seeds of this plant in an e-shop?
Or could anybody sell or exchange with me some of them?

JSK said...

Sunlight Gardens offers plants of M. gonocarpos but does not offer seeds. I would suggest contacting them at