The Q&A Archives: How do I get rid of evasive vines in my backyard.?

Question: I have three tall and old fir trees in my backyard. For years the floor underneath them was just pine needles. Now a dark green vine plant has taken over the floor and crawling up the tree trunks. How do I get rid of it without killing the trees? I put newspaper down last summer on top of it but most of it came back.

Answer: I don't know what the vine is, but it must be coming from somewhere else in your garden, a neighbor's garden or the forest floor. Without knowing what it is, I can't really suggest a control option other than to chop the vines down at ground level and pulling them out of the trees before they attach themselves to the bark and limbs. Be sure to wear gloves - you might be dealing with poison ivy. Once you've cut some of the growth place it in a plastic bag and take it to your local cooperative extension office for positive identification. Helpful folks there can tell you what it is and how best to control it. Contact St. Louis County Cooperative Extension, 121 S. Meramec, Suite 501, Clayton, MO 63105 phone 314/615-2911 or their north office at 724 North Union, St. Louis, MO 63108 phone 314/367-2585. Best wishes with your landscape.

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