Above: Wild Cucumber off of bike path behind Gregory Street in Madison, Wisconsin. (8/22/19).
Wild Cucumber- Echinocystis lobata
Wild Cucumber is a native, herbaceous vine that can be as long as 26' and which climbs, with the help of coiling, branched tendrils, over shrubs and fences or trail across the ground. Wild Cucumber likes wet to moist areas including streambanks, thickets and roadsides.
Separate male and female flowers are produced on the same plant. The flowers of Wild Cucumber are pale yellowish-white, 6-parted and about 1/3" wide ("star-like" with thin, long petals). The male flowers form in clusters on a long, erect raceme from the leaf axils. The female flowers occur singly or in pairs interspersed among the male flowers. The female flowers have a prickly ovary beneath the petals, which develops into the spiny fruit.
Other Names: Balsam-apple, Bur cucumber.
Above: Wild Cucumber off of bike path behind Gregory Street on August 22, 2019.
For more information on Wild Cucumber, visit Wikipedia.
Or, visit the UW-Madison Wisconsin State Herbarium website page about Wild Cucumber - Echinocystis lobata.
Or, visit the UW-Madison Wisconsin Horticulture Division of Extension website page about Wild Cucumber - Echinocystis lobata.
Above: Wild Cucumber (11/28/19).
Above: Wild Cucumber (11/29/19).
Above: 1913 Wild Cucumber illustration.
Above: Microampelis lobata (Mock Apple) illustration by Alice Lounsberry circa 1899.
Above: Wild Cucumber specimen collected on August 10, 2013 in Waunakee in Dane County.