by Stephen Mifsud
   23 Feb 2020      ()
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Vinca major   (Greater Periwinkle)

Vinca major   (APOCYNACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands at or after year 2000.

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Profile Date Oct-2010 (last update: 12-Jan-2019)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (Oct-2010) Vinca major retrieved from on 2020-Feb-23

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Vinca major L.
Published in Sp. Pl. 209 (1753)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Pervinca major (L.) Scopoli
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life ]

Plant Family :

Apocynaceae Juss. (The Dogbane Family)
4 species from the Apocynaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Greater Periwinkle, Blue Bottons

Maltese name(s) :

Pervinka, Vinka tal-warda kbira, Dliel il-Madliena

Status for Malta :

Species that was introduced in Malta after year 1492 and spreads to form established, non-invasive populations. It may become become invasive

Frequency :

Very Common     Common     Frequent     Scarce     Rare     Very rare     Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: CHAMEOPHYTE (dwarf or small shrubs)
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection [link]:

Not Protected by Law (LN200/2011 or LN311/2006)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :


Colour of Flowers:

Blue or Violet

Species Description and Distribution

Habitat in Europe:

Woods, maquis and rocky areas close water courses.

Preferred habitat in Malta:

Cultivated in gardens, yards and groves but a rare escapee from dumped horticultural material, preferring sheltered valley sides and maquis. A few of the known populations have persisted for more than 15 years and hence regarded as naturalised, but growth is limited to asexual spreading.

Botanical Description:

Stems up to 100 cm, ascending in the lower part, then arching or procumbent, overwintering. Leaves 2.5-9 x 2-6 cm, mostly ovate or broadly ovate (rarely lanceolate), evergreen, the margins ciliate with hairs 0.1-1 mm. Flowering stems up to 30 cm; pedicels shorter than the subtending leaves. Calyx-lobes 7-17 mm, very narrowly triangular, the margins densely ciliate with hairs 0.5-1 mm. Corolla-tube 12-15 mm; limb 30-50 mm in diameter, usually bluish-purple; lobes obliquely truncate.

Distributional range:

W. & C. Mediterranean region, frequently naturalized elsewhere.

Native region outside Europe:

Mediterranean region

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):

Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):

France (incl. Monaco and Channel Islands but excluding Corse), Spain (incl. Andorra but excl. the Balaerics), Italy (excl. Sicily and Sardignia), ex-Jugoslavia, Sicily and/or Malta, Introduced in  Austria and Liechtenstein, Britain (excl. Northern Ireland and Channel islands), Bulgaria, Corse, Crete, Greece, Ireland, Switzerland, Portugal, Russia and former USSR

Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(Euro+Med Checklist, 2017) - Country codes

? AE Al Ga(F) dGr dHs Hs(S) It dSa Si(S) Sl Sr Tu(A) [AE dAg cAu Au(A) Az(L S) cBr Bu Ca(C G H P T) Co Cr nCy cGr cHb Hb(E) cHe Hu LS Lu dMa Md(M) No Si(M) Tu(A) Uk cUk(K)]

Images (9 images)
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-0.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-1.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-2.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-3.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-4.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-5.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-6.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-7.
   Vinca major   -   Image Code: VNCMJ-8.

Links & Further info

Google Web

Google Images

Yahoo Web

Yahoo Images




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



The Plant List


Vienna Virt. Hb.





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