E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Ligustrum vulgare L.
common privet (European privet)
Oleaceae (Olive family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #6103)

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Distribution of Ligustrum vulgare
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Species Information

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Deciduous shrub up to 5 m tall; branches many, grey-barked, glabrous or sparsely hairy.
Opposite, persistent, firm, dark-green, oblong to egg-shaped, 3-6 cm long, short-stalked, entire.
Inflorescence of small, bell-shaped flowers in dense terminal panicles 3-6 cm long; corollas white or pale-purple, the tubes 2.5-3 mm long, about equal to the lobes.
Drupes, 2-lobed, 1-2 seeded, black and hard.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Mid Spring
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Black
Present from Summer to Fall
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry waste places, roadsides and disturbed areas in the lowland zone; infrequent on SE Vancouver Island and rare in the lower mainland; introduced from Europe.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References