Most studies on the effects of tanniferous plants on nematodes have examined forages but have neglected the woody plants. Therefore, in vitro effects of extracts from 3 woody plants (Rubus fructicosus, Quercus robur, Corylus avellana) have been tested on trichostrongyles and compared to sainfoin, a legume forage. Because some in vivo results indicated that the effects of tannins differed depending on the parasitic species and/or stages, the effects were measured on 3rd-stage larvae (L3) and adult worms of Teladorsagia circumcincta, Haemonchus contortus and Trichostrongylus colubriformis. The effects of plant extracts varied according to the plant sources, the parasite species and stages. For the woody plants, significant inhibitory effects were obtained on both stages of abomasal species. Results for T. colubriformis were more variable. Effects of sainfoin extracts were significant on T. colubriformis and H. contortus L3, and on abomasal adult worms. In order to assess the implications of tannins, polyethylene glycol (PEG), an inhibitor of tannins, was added to hazel tree, oak and sainfoin extracts. Without PEG, significant inhibitory effects on L3 and adult worms were confirmed. After addition of PEG, the larval migration and motility of adult worms were restored in most cases. These results confirm variations in effects depending on factors related to plants or parasites and suggest that tannins are partly responsible for the effects.