Tips on how to help save our trees from the Appearance Commission’s Kudzu patrol

Published 8:43 am Tuesday, January 4, 2022

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Well, we are in the midst of the winter slog of chilly days and long nights.  What to do?

I’ve got an idea your trees will love.  You know the trees that look like they’ve been the target of some alien invasion. The ones that wear ivy like a bath towel or the ones that have tentacles of kudzu draping high from its boughs like an untrimmed armpit. Yeah, those trees! Let’s show some holiday cheer this winter and free them from their dungeons of darkness by clipping the kudzu-ivy-wisteria-bittersweet vines that shield them from light and tree happiness.  

For optimal results, we must be somewhat scientific. We need to clip or saw the vines in two places and at least four feet apart. One at eye level and the next just one or two inches from where they appear out of the ground. That helps deter any regrowth from using the dead vines as scaffolding to climb back into our rescued trees. Next, we need to paint the stubs of the vines coming out of the ground with a concentrated herbicide that you can pick up at your local hardware store. Mix a small amount with equal amounts of water and pour it into a plastic jar with a lid and use a brush to paint it thickly on freshly cut vines. The sooner the herbicide is applied, (hopefully within a minute), the sooner it is wicked up by the plant. Finally, let’s do this when it’s not freezing cold…say 40 degrees or higher.

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In the summer, check back and do some spot spraying of any residual weeds trying to re-establish control of our rescued woody friend. And, just like that you have become an official hero in the plant kingdom.  Deep in the depths of the arboreal world, there is a plaque with your name on it and words of your heroic deed are whispered endlessly in the tendrils of time.  How does it feel to be glorified? 

The labeling on herbicides is a legal document. Please refer to the labeling to protect yourself and the environment when using herbicide products.


Submitted by Greg Miner