An aggressive, nonwoody, deciduous perennial vine that can overtake acres of vegetation, similar to kudzu, climbing over shrubs and trees. Leaves usually opposite (sometimes alternate toward branch tips), green, with 7-9 parallel veins, fiddle-shaped or heart-shaped, with pointed tip and two lobes near the base of the leaf. New growth often has a reddish coloration at the base of the leaves. Stems are round, slender, twining; plants usually die back to ground and resprout in spring. Flowers tiny, white to greenish-yellow, with scent of cinnamon. Male and female flowers are formed on separate plants, and female plants have not been observed in the wild in our country. Chinese yam is not known to produce seed in the United States, although bulbils, which resemble tiny Irish potatoes and are not technically fruits, are produced in the leaf axils.