Vitis aestivalis

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Common name: summer grape [1], silverleaf grape [1]

Vitis aestivalis
Vitis aestivalis IWF.jpg
Photo by John Hilty hosted at [1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicots
Order: Rhamnales
Family: Vitaceae
Genus: Vitis
Species: V. aestivalis
Binomial name
Vitis aestivalis
Natural range of Vitis aestivalis from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Taxonomic Notes

Synonyms: V. rufotomentosa Small

Varieties: V. aestivalis Michaux var. aestivalis, V. aestivalis Michaux var. bicolor Deam


V. aestivalis is a perennial vine in the Vitaceae family native to North America and Canada. [2]


V. aestivalis is found in the eastern half of the United States and California, as well as the Ontario region of Canada. [2]



V. aestivalis proliferates in forests and woodlands, mostly upland. [1]

Associated Species- V. aestivalis has been found with plants of the following genera: Ulmus, Betula, Quercus, and Carpinus [3].

Vitis aestivalis is an indicator species for the North Florida Longleaf Woodlands community type as described in Carr et al. (2010).[4]


V. aestivalis has been observed to flower in April and May. [5]

Seed dispersal

This species is thought to be dispersed by consumption by vertebrates. [6]

Fire ecology

V. aestivalis is not fire resistant and has low fire tolerance[2]; despite this, populations have been known to persist through repeated annual burns.[7][8]

Herbivory and toxicology

V. aestivalis has high palatability for browsing animals and humans, but low palatability for grazing animals. [2] This species has been observed to host aphids such as Aphis sp. (family Aphididae).[9]

Conservation, cultivation, and restoration

V. aestivalis is listed as endangered by the Maine Department of Conservation Natural Areas Program, as a prohibited noxious weed by the Ohio Department of Agriculture Plant Industry Division, and as a weedy or invasive species by the state agriculture or natural resource departments of 46 states. [2]

Cultural use

Vitis aestivalis produces an edible drupe that can be eaten raw or made into goods such as jelly or wine.[10]

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Weakley, A. S. (2015). Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States. Chapel Hill, NC, University of North Carolina Herbarium.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 USDA Plant Database
  3. Florida State University Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium database. URL: Last accessed: June 2014. Collectors: Robert K. Godfrey, R. A. Norris, Richard S. Mitchell, Chris Cooksey, R. Hayes, Loran C. Anderson, J. M. Kane, Kevin M. Robertson. States and Counties: Florida: Dixie, Gilchrist, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, and Wakulla. Georgia: Liberty, Seminole, and Thomas.
  4. Carr, S.C., K.M. Robertson, and R.K. Peet. 2010. A vegetation classification of fire-dependent pinelands of Florida. Castanea 75:153-189.
  5. Nelson, G. PanFlora: Plant data for the eastern United States with emphasis on the Southeastern Coastal Plains, Florida, and the Florida Panhandle. Accessed: 30 MAY 2018
  6. Kirkman, L. Katherine. Unpublished database of seed dispersal mode of plants found in Coastal Plain longleaf pine-grasslands of the Jones Ecological Research Center, Georgia.
  7. Robertson, K.M. Unpublished data collected from Pebble Hill Fire Plots, Pebble Hill Plantation, Thomasville, Georgia.
  8. Platt, W.J., R. Carter, G. Nelson, W. Baker, S. Hermann, J. Kane, L. Anderson, M. Smith, K. Robertson. 2021. Unpublished species list of Wade Tract old-growth longleaf pine savanna, Thomasville, Georgia.
  9. [2]
  10. Hardin, J.W., Arena, J.M. 1969. Human Poisoning from Native and Cultivated Plants. Duke University Press, Durham, North Carolina.