Lonicera tatarica is a shrub to 3 m tall, twigs hairless, gray, hollow.
Leaves opposite, 3-6 cm, egg-shaped, dark green hairless above, tip pointed, base blunt to slightly lobed, pale to bluish green, hairless below, stalk 0.2-0.6 cm, hairless, leafs out April, grows rapidly, leaf drop later than most native shrubs.
Flowers pink to white, sometimes red,bilaterally symmetrical, tubular,5-lobed, in pairs, usually , flowers stalks much longer than leaf stalks 1.5-2 cm (Rehder 1986); blooms May-June, insect and hummingbird pollinated.
Fruit red, translucent, fruit stalk at or over 1.5 cm long, pulp lipid < 10% (White and Stiles 1992); ripens June-Sept., fruit eaten and seeds dispersed by birds, seeds germinate fall to late spring, seedlings establish most easily in disturbed soil (Converse, 1995).
Wetland status: FACU.
Frequency in NYC: Occasional
Habitat: Understories of weedy second growth forest, edges.
Notes: Cut shrubs resprout, broken roots can sprout also. Leafs out earlier in spring than native shrubs and retains leaves into late November or December, in mild years (Gargiullo personal observation), this prolonged shading of the understory inhibits spring ephemerals and trees seedlings (Woods 1993). Susceptible to insolibasidium blight (Insolibasidium deformans), a fungus affecting only honeysuckles, that destroys leaves (Wayne et al. 1989).