New Zealand Status: Introduced
Conservation Status: Pest (NPPA)
Lonicera japonica is a climbing plant with paired leaves along its stems. Its distinctive flowers have a wider upper lip with four small lobes and a lower lip with a single lobe. The flowers are initially white sometimes with a pinkish tinge and turn cream or yellow as they age. Its fruit is shiny black berries that are 5-10mm long.
Japanese Honeysuckle grows vigorously in moderately fertile soils. It can climb over and smother most plants in its path, from ground level to mid-canopy forest species. It spreads easily through vegetative growth, broken stems readily sprout, and seeds are spread by birds. It occurs in scrub, forests and margins, disturbed or secondary forest, coastal areas, wetland margins, roadsides, farm hedges, wasteland, rough pasture, and in clearings.
© Geografpix Photography, Steve Reader