Carrion Flower, Upright Greenbrier

Smilax ecirrhata

Family: Smilacaceae
Genus: Smilax (SMIL-aks) (Info)
Species: ecirrhata


Unknown - Tell us

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


30-40 ft. (9-12 m)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Spring



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:


Brookville, Indiana

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Helena, Montana

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 14, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

This species is one of the very well behaved species unlike its other cousin Greenbrier species. It have no thorns and grow in clumps as a semi - vine. It will climb trees and shrubs but have weak stems and tendrils. Very common in woodland, both dry and mesic in Minnesota. Dies back to the ground every year and is not woody - more like straw - like. Height varies - I have seen one grow to 6 to 8 feet in mostly sun in rich soil in a garden supported by a tree - 2 to 3 feet is more common in gardens and 1 foot tall is not unusual in dense shade.

Is id by the deeply veined leaves as it is often one of a few species of ground vines that grows in dry shade along with wood - bine and wild grapes during the summer season- its semi vining help it get light in the dense shade of sh... read more


On Dec 8, 2004, Equilibrium wrote:

Smilax ecirrhata is a native to the midwestern states of the US. The bloom is rather dainty and innocuous. If you get real close to the plant when it is in bloom, you will be able to smell why this plant was named a carrion flower- it smells like rotting meat- yuck. You do need to get extremely close to the plant to get a whiff and the odor only lasts for a few days so don't let this stop you from adding this to your woodland garden. Wonderful woodland plant that produces dark blue berries in the fall. These berries provide fall and winter fruits for many native species of birds. I would also like to comment that this plant works very well when companion planted with native ferns. Nice texture combination.