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Bigleaf periwinkle (Vinca major)

Bigleaf periwinkle Common Names: Big periwinkle, Greater periwinkle

Description: Introduced to North America as an ornamental plant used for groundcover.

Habit: Herbaceous, perennial, rhizomatous, stoloniferous, evergreen trailing vine, glabrous with a milky juice.

Leaves: Opposite, long-petiolate, ovate to ovate-lanceolate, 3-9 cm long, with fine hairs along the margins, glossy dark green in color with a leathery texture, entire but distinctly ciliate margin.

Stems: Woody, slender, trailing, twining, spreading 2-5 m across and 50-70 cm high.

Flowers: Solitary, bluish-purple in color, 3-5 cm wide and about 2 cm long, up to 4 per stem, calyx lobes ciliate, short bristles on the margins; flowers from early spring to autumn.

Fruit and seeds: Follicles are 3-5 cm long, long cylindrical pods without tufts of hair.

Habitat: Native to southern Europe and northern Africa. Grows well in moist undergrowth and can be found in woodlands, hedgerows and banks along rivers.

Reproduction: By seed and rhizomes.

Similar species: Common Periwinkle (Vinca minor).

Monitoring and rapid response: Effectively controlled using any of several readily available general use herbicides such as glyphosate.

Credits: The information provided in this factsheet was gathered from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, E-flora of British Columbia and Wikipedia.

Individual species images that appear with a number in a black box are courtesy of the network ( photo author credits may not be included due to the small display size of the images and subsequent difficulty of reading the provided text. All other images appear courtesy of Google (

Common Name:

Bigleaf periwinkle

Scientific Name:

Vinca major







USDA Symbol: