A climbing perennial with liana-like woody stems, often covering large areas on hedge banks, hedges and walls, trees and scrub, sand dunes, disused quarry faces and ruins. It is a classic railway plant. On base-rich soils, or utilising lime mortar, the plant can form virtual monocultures. The familiar feathered propagules, `Old Man`s Beard`, disperse readily, and often colonise new cuttings or banks. 0-305 m (N. of Matlock, Derbys.).
Comparison of the current map with the 1962 Atlas suggests that the distribution of C. vitalba is stable.
European Temperate element; widely naturalised outside its native range.
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