Vitis riparia Michx.


Family: Vitaceae

Vernacular Name: Riverbank grape

Synonyms: Vitis riparia Michx. var. praecox Engelm. ex Bailey; Vitis riparia Michx. var. syrticola (Fern. & Wieg.) Fern.; Vitis vulpina L. var. praecox (Engelm. ex Bailey) Bailey; Vitis vulpina L. ssp. riparia (Michx.) R.T. Clausen; Vitis vulpina L. var. syrticola Fern. & Wieg.

Description: A grape differing from our common V. arizonica Engelm. by having nodal diaphragms less than 1 mm wide (rather that > 1 mm wide) and with growing tips enveloped by enlarging and unfolding leaves (rather than not being enveloped). It is much more similar to V. acerifolia Raf., which has pubescence on the growing tips and branchlets of the season. V. acerifolia also has smaller inflorescences, less than 8 cm long.

Distribution: Eastern North America, as far west as western North Dakota, eastern Wyoming, central Kansas and Oklahoma, and extreme eastern Texas (Moore, unpubl.).

Plants Seen or Cited: There are 11 specimens at UNM identified as V. riparia; their correct identification as might be applied by Moore's treatment (1991, unpubl.) is unknown. Nine are from New Mexico. Six are from the north-central or north-eastern part of New Mexico, and are possibly V. acerifolia. Two are from the southeastern portion of the state. Moore (unpubl.) maps this species from southeastern Colorado and northeastern New Mexico to southwestern Kansas, western Oklahoma, and northcentral Texas. The correct identification of a ninth specimen at UNM (Wagner 1030) from Hidalgo Co. is not known. All specimens so identified at NMC are from other states within the range of V. riparia as described in Moore.

Habitat: Inhabitating a wide variety of habitats but preferring moist soils, stream banks, pond margins, alluvial woodlands, but also on roadsides, hedge rows and fence rows, 5-1700 m (Moore 1991, unpubl.); On trees and cliffs in open woodlands, along streams and in canyons (Correll and Johnston 1970).

Comments: There are no certain records from New Mexico of this common eastern North American species. Correl and Johnston (1970) cite the range of the species to include New Mexico. Moore (1991) cites no records of the species from New Mexico, nor does he indicate it to occur in the state (he notes reports from the Pacific Northwest). Martin and Hutchins do not record V. riparia from New Mexico, but indicate that V. longii Prince (a synonym of V. acerifolia) occurs in the northeastern part of the state.

Status: Probably not in New Mexico; if so, then peripheral. Common in eastern North America.

Important Literature:

Correll, D.S., and M.C. Johnston. 1970. Manual of the Vascular Plants of Texas. Texas Research Foundaton, Renner. 1881 pp.

Moore, M.O. 1991. Classification and systematics of eastern North American Vitis L. (Vitaceae) north of Mexico. Sida 14(3):339-367.

Moore, M.O. Unpublished. Vitaceae, in Flora of North America North of Mexico, 60 manuscript pages + maps.

Information Compiled By: Richard Spellenberg, 1998