Invasive Plants of Wisconsin

Lonicera tatarica L.
Tartarian honeysuckle
Family: Caprifoliaceae
summer aspect leaves flowers leaves ovary and bractoles

Lonicera tatarica is an introduced species in Wisconsin and it has become invasive in our native communities. It has a very bushy growth form usually in the range of 5-8 feet tall, occasionally taller. The leaves are entire (smooth margins, no teeth) and opposite. The flowers are white or pink and the fruits are red or orange and numerous. Birds eat the fruits and appear to be a major means of spreading the seeds. The pith is brown with a hollow center (as is the pith of our other alien shrub species of Lonicera). The leaves of L. tatarica are glabrous, unlike those of the similar species L. morrowi and L. xbella. In northeastern Wisconsin, L. tatarica is uncommon and most of the weedy shrub honeysuckles are L. xbella.

Lonicera tatarica will sprout back vigorously if the stems are cut off, so the stumps must either be pulled or treated with herbicide, such as glyphosate ("Roundup"), which can be applied directly to the cut stump to avoid harming desirable plants nearby. If the plants have reached reproductive age it may be necessary to remove numerous seedling plants in the area for several years..


known Wisconsin distribution


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