NATIVE RANGE: East Asia (China, Korea, Japan)
FIRST FINDING IN SLOVENIA: 1960
PATHWAYS: horticulture; transport of soil
POSSIBLE TO FIND: year-round
FLOWERING SEASON: May-July
DESCRIPTION: A scrambling, twisting vine, climbing on trees and bushes or trailing on the ground. Leaves opposite, lanceolate to ovate, lower leaves sometimes palmately compound. Leaves have short petioles and truncate, acute or cordate leaf bases. They are dark green above, slightly lighter below. Flowers are fragrant, 3–5 cm across, borne in pairs on axillary peduncles. Corolla pubescent, initially white, later turning yellow. Fruits are shiny black berries, which are fused at the base. It reproduces both vegetatively and via seeds.
HABITAT: Scrub, sparse forests, mountain slopes, stony sites, roadsides; (800–)1500 m.
STATUS: Common in Spain, France and the United Kingdom with fewer observations throughout the rest of Europe. Regularly cultivated in gardens. Common in Western and Southwestern Slovenia and spreading to new locations. Invasive in the Primorska region and in the lower Vipava valley.
SIMILAR SPECIES: Evergreen honeysuckle (L. acuminata) has lanceolate to linear-lanceolate leaves, and smaller flowers which are not fragrant. In perfoliate honeysuckle (L. caprifolium) the uppermost leaves are fused around the stem. Flowers are placed in leaf axils in groups of six. Berries are red. The European native, Etruscan honeysuckle (L. etrusca) has similar characteristics.