Tryon officials unconcerned about kudzu problem

Published 7:44 pm Monday, August 9, 2010

To the Editor:

If your able bodied neighbors yard is overgrown with weeds, what does that say about your neighbor?

From one side to the other the Town of Tryon is overgrown with weeds. We know it as kudzu. Do the citizens of Tryon or its elected officials care? You be the judge.

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From the action on the issue (or more appropriately, lack of action) it would seem that the answer is no.

In a recent TDB front-page article entitled, Polk appearance commission designs entrance landscaping, their spokesman, Mark Byington, concludes, We should plant more trees, and that an endowment fund should be established and a local contractor hired to maintain the plantings.

He goes onto say, Trees enhance the communitys economic stability by attracting business and tourists, and that trees reduce storm water runoff, improve water quality, reduce air pollution and improve psychological well being. All of this is very true.

But, the article is strangely silent about the single medium by which our existing and irreplaceable native trees such as red and white oak, hickory, maple, sourwood, whit ash, yellow poplar, sycamore, etc., etc. are being systematically destroyed, namely kudzu.

Why is this?

You know the answer and it is not pretty. It is because eradicating kudzu involves actual work rather than discussion and grants, hopes and wishes.

There is an endless prater from the Tryon Mayor about going green and articles from citizens and county officials about recycling plastic bottles, and editorials from citizens decrying the presence of tar balls washing up on Louisiana beaches. Meanwhile, the kudzu invasion right here in our own community that is creating aesthetic as well as economic chaos is a very real problem which we can actually solve, but only if we can muster the collective will to do so.

I hope this letter will precipitate a barrage of others by like-minded individuals who are not afraid to speak up on this issue. Otherwise, inertia will prevail and nothing will be done.

In that case it is we, ourselves, who could be accused (rightfully so) of being the indolent next-door neighbor.

Jim Cooper