Greenbriar

Smilax spp.

Photo of Greenbriar
Photo by Dr. John Meade, weed scientist emeritus
Rutgers NJAES Cooperative Extension

Greenbriar is also called bull briar and cat briar. The green woody stems are armed with long sharp spines which readily tear clothes and flesh. It moves as a vine and will completely cover the edge of a woods or a blueberry field. As it weaves itself together it becomes impenetrable. As a member of the lily family it has a bulb situated deep in the ground. Control is virtually impossible except by continued cutting. Attempts to dig up the bulb have been unsuccessful.

Additional Images


  1. Rutgers
  2. Executive Dean of Agriculture and Natural Resources
  3. School of Environmental and Biological Sciences