Hedge Bindweed (Calystegia sepium)

Perennial Climber
Convolvulus sepium.
Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Hedge Bindweed
Calystegia sepium
Convolvulaceae

The stems are very flexible and can be used as an emergency string for tying[6]. It is fairly strong but not very long-lasting[K].

  • Medicinal Use

    The root is demulcent, diuretic, febrifuge, poultice and strongly purgative[9, 21, 178, 222]. Use of the root is believed to increase the flow of bile[222].

  • Edible Use

    Stalks and root – cooked[2, 46, 128, 153]. Washed and steamed[179]. A pleasant sweet taste[178]. Rich in starch and sugars, it is very nutritious[179]. It should not be eaten regularly, however, due to its possible purgative effect[179].

    Young shoots – cooked[46, 61, 105]. Some caution is advised since they are possibly purgative[179].

  • Cautionary Notes

    This species is said to be purgative[173], some caution is advised.

Cultivation & Habitat

Seed – sow spring in a cold frame in a free draining compost and only just cover. The seed usually germinates in 1 – 3 months at 15¡c[138]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in early spring whilst dormant[200].
Easily grown in ordinary garden soil in a sunny position, but plants are apt to become invasive[1, 200]. Hedge bindweed is a troublesome garden weed, especially when growing on moist soils[1, 4]. The plant is a vigorous climber with annual shoots 3 metres or more long. These twine around other plants and can kill them by smothering them[4]. Once established, it is very difficult to eradicate the plant because it has very deep roots and is capable of re-growing from any part of the root left in the ground. The flowers open in sunny weather and remain closed during dull weather[4]. Nearly all taxa in Calystegia intergrade geographically into neighboring taxa with the exception of the widespread coastal species, C. soldanella (Linnaeus) R. Brown. It is impossible to draw clearly defined specific limits, and intermediate forms are always found where two taxa approximate geographically[266].
Most of Europe, excluding the north but including Britain, W. Asia, N. Africa and N. America.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.