Asked on Jul 8, 2019

What is this destroying my tree and how do I get rid of it?

Jan ClarkRosanneLastduchess


I know as soon as someone sees these pictures and hears how the vines are crawling up my trees, someone will say,'Oooh, that's a ___ . Kill it by ___.' But I've already lost 3 trees to this scourge (1 on the north side of the electric wire, 1 on the south, and one a good 300 feet away.) I love my tree-lined driveway but I'm afraid I'm going to lose it😢😭. Please help!!!

You can see up close the roots that dig into the bark, killing my trees.

Can the size and shape of the leaves help you id what this vine is?

9 answers
  • Kelli L. Milligan
    on Jul 8, 2019

    Take your pictures to your local nursary for more information about your problem. They know your region and can recommend a fix. They are a great source of help

  • Robyn Garner
    on Jul 8, 2019

    You can also call your county extension office. They will have a department that deals with municipal trees, etc. and they will know what's running rampant in your area.

  • S
    on Jul 8, 2019

    The vine might be poison ivy. It generally doesn’t kill trees as it is a climber, not a winder/strangling vine. There is some sort of insect thing going on in the white fluffy patch as well. Always start with a nursery garden center, they have lots of knowledge for your area

  • Ohio Sandie
    on Jul 8, 2019

    That vine looks like poison ivy or poison oak be careful

  • Betty
    on Jul 8, 2019

    Leaves of three leave them be!

    • Shuganne
      on Jul 12, 2019

      Too late. I'm not sure yet,what kind of vine it is, but I'm itchin' like a gorilla sitting on an ant hill!

  • MGMN
    on Jul 8, 2019

    Call your local conservation district, they usually can identify plants like this and if it's an invasive species they also may have a strike team that can eradicate it. If not a strike team they can generally let you know what to use to get rid of it.

  • Lastduchess
    on Jul 8, 2019

    What you have is Smilax, or a Briar vine. It is extremely invasive and hurts like all hell when you accidentally touch the sharp thorns which cover the stems.

  • Rosanne
    on Jul 8, 2019

    I know that this will sound labor intensive, and it is, but I have found the only way to irradiate these vines is to get the roots that are spreading underground. Otherwise it will keep coming back. I live on 2 1/2 acres in a forest and have quite a variety of vines cohabiting with my trees. Periodically I go out and pull vines down that have grown and get as much of the root as I can. I know I'm not ridding the area of the vine, but I'm keeping them under control. Sometimes that's the best you can do

  • Jan Clark
    on Jul 8, 2019

    Okay, here's what you do. First, protect yourself. Most vines like this have an oil they secrete which will give a nasty rash to anything that touches it. Long sleeves, a hat, gloves and long pants are necessary. Next, you'll never get the vine out of the tree but you can kill it. With clean loppers, cut out a six-inch section of EACH one about two feet from the ground. Those are the feeder shoots and the vine above will die (even if the roots have attached to the tree). Treat the bottom of the vine with a systemic herbicide to kill them. Systemic means that when you treat the leaves and stem, the poisons are absorbed into the whole plant. Since this seems pretty hardy, you'll probably need to repeat several times. But you'll only be dealing with vine stumps which is TONS easier (and safer) than trying to pull down vines. (If it is a stinging ivy, wash or toss everything that you've worn that touches it. The oil stays potent for quite awhile.) Best of luck!

Your comment...