|Type:||Vines and shrubs|
Honeysuckles (genus Lonicera; syn. Caprifolium Mill.) are arching shrubs or twining vines in the family Caprifoliaceae, native to the Northern Hemisphere. There are about 180 species of honeysuckle, with by far the greatest diversity in China, where over 100 species occur; by comparison, Europe and North America have only about 20 native species each. Widely known species include Lonicera periclymenum (European Honeysuckle), Lonicera japonica (Japanese Honeysuckle, White Honeysuckle, or Chinese Honeysuckle) and Lonicera sempervirens (Coral Honeysuckle, Trumpet Honeysuckle, or Woodbine Honeysuckle).
The leaves are opposite, simple, and from 1–10 cm long; most are deciduous but some are evergreen. Many of the species have sweetly-scented, tubular flowers that produce a sweet, edible nectar. The fruit is a red, blue or black berry containing several seeds; in most species the berries are mildly poisonous, but a few (notably Lonicera caerulea) have edible berries.
Cultivation and uses
Lonicera xylosteum (Fly Honeysuckle) is a common homeopathic remedy, used for asthma, breathing difficulties and syphilis. Lonicera periclymenum (European honeysuckle) is an uncommon homeopathic remedy, used for irritability with violent outbursts.
Wood cuttings from the species Lonicera tartarica, native to Eurasia, are sold as cat toys. The wood contains nepetalactone, which is the active ingredient found in catnip. Many breeds of cats react to the scent of the wood and will paw, lick or rub against it.
Lonicera japonica and Lonicera maackii (Amur Honeysuckle) are considered invasive species in the United States and in New Zealand. Honeysuckle can be controlled by cutting, flaming, or burning the plant to root level and repeating on two-week increments until nutrient reserves in the roots are depleted. Honeysuckle can also be controlled through annual applications of glyphosate, or through grubbing if high labor and soil destruction are not of concern.
Honeysuckles are also eaten by children, who remove the blossom by hand to suck at the sweet nectar in the center.
Another name for honeysuckle is woodbine; and eglantine is used in Milton's L'Allegro.
During Victorian times, teenage girls were forbidden to bring honeysuckle home because it was thought to induce erotic dreams.
Pests and Diseases
The plant is eaten by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species - see w:list of Lepidoptera which feed on Honeysuckles.
- Woolly Honeysuckle Aphid: Prociphilus xylostei
- Honeysuckle Witches Broom Aphid
- Russian Aphid
- Greedy Scale: Hemiberlesia rapax
- Oystershell Scale: Lepidosaphes ulmi
- San Jose Scale: Quadraspidiotus perniciosus
- Euonymus scale: Unaspis euonymi
- European Peach Scale
- Hemispherical Scale
- Planthopper: Anormensis septentrionalis
- Greenhouse Whitefly: Trialeurodes vaporariorum
- Long-tailed Mealybug: Pseudococcus longispinus
- Four-Lined Plant Bug: Poecilocapsus lineatus
- Flea Beetles
- Boxelder Leafroller: Archips negundamus
- Oblique Banded Leaf Roller: Choristoneura rosaceana
- Fall Webworm: Hyphantria cunea
- Omnivorous Looper Caterpillars: Sabulodes aegrotata, Sabulodes Caberata
- European Honeysuckle Leaf Roller
- Genista Caterpillar
- Hummingbird Clearwing Sphinx
- Red Banded Leaf Roller
- Snowberry Clearwing
- Honeysuckle Sawfly: Zaraea inflata
- Clover Mite