Ontario Wildflowers website

Canada Moonseed
(Menispermum canadense)

Other common names: Common Moonseed, Moonseed, Moonseed Vine, Yellow Parilla

French names: Ménisperme du Canada

Family: Moonseed Family (Menispermaceae)

Distinctive features: Vine

Similar species:
  •   Riverbank Grape (Vitis riparia) - Leaves similar. Seeds are not crescent-shaped and are edible. Vines have tendrils.

  •   One-seeded Bur Cucumber (Sicyos angulatus)


Flowers: Summer;  White;  6 parts (petals)

Leaves: Simple, Entire

Habitat: Fields and Open Areas

Poisonous: Fruits are poisonous. They resemble those of wild grapes.

Books: Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 356    Shrubs of Ontario: 121   

Native/Non-native: Native

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: : of Canada, Canadian


For more information visit: Ontario Trees and Shrubs

Photographs: 68 photographs available, of which 7 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Typical leaves.

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Sometimes the leaves are not as lobed.

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

A grouping of leaves.

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Canada Moonseed trailing up a tree, very similar to grape vines.

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

This is one of the distinctive features of Canada Moonseed leaves - the leaf stem (petiole) attaches to the leaf just in from the leaf edge. This helps to distinguish Canada Moonseed from Grapes.

Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Unripe fruit in late August (sorry, the photo is slightly out of focus!).


Range map for Canada Moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)