Vines On Trees


Old 04-22-08, 03:18 PM
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Cool Vines On Trees

I was planning to get a trumpet vine to grow up into my pine tree, which I've seen occuring naturally in wooded areas. Someone told me though that any vine that encircles a tree will eventually kill the tree by slow strangulation. Since the tree (though already quite large) will continue to grow this would undoubtedly be true if the vine did not somhow adjust itself to the tree's growth. Will any encircling climber kill any tree it climbs?
I was also considering a vine for a good sized water oak in my yard.
In case it matters in this case I live in Hammond LA which is on the line between zones eight and nine.

Louis Rue
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Old 04-22-08, 09:14 PM
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If you want to grow trumpet vine, do so on a trellis or fence and plan to do a lot of pruning to contain it. One vine can reach 40 feet long x 10 feet wide. Old vines can be 60 feet long with 12" trunks. Trumpet vines are very invasive. The vines can literally take over a forested area. Trumpet Creeper vines wrap around trees but do not choke them like honeysuckle or wisteria. Many do not like trumpet vine taking over their trees as they climb upward to reach the sun above the tree's canopy. Hummingbirds love Trumpet Creeper.

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Old 04-23-08, 03:38 AM
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I definitely agree with twelvepole. An arbor or trellis for vines. I don't trust any aggressive vines to let the tree get all the light and oxygen it needs.

I spend some time clearing trails...vines of many types are beautiful but will overpower everything if given the opportunity.

Old 04-23-08, 03:26 PM
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Louis, if you are considering trumpet vine, read on.

When I moved into this house 20 years ago as a renter, I inherited a trumpet vine - campsis radicans. I have learned that it was the last plant to leaf out in the spring and the first to lose it's leaves in the fall in my zone 7 garden. Here's my horror story and what I've learned about this vine. Over time the vine began to bloom and pop up everywhere in the yard. I would pull the sprouts only to find more year after year. When it pops up in the lawn it can just be mowed. After 13 years we purchased the house and had to cut down 5 trees and regrade the land due to overplanting of trees and flooding. When we dug up the stumps from the trees and regraded we discovered roots of the vine 3' to 4' deep in the soil, up to 30' from the parent plant and as large around as my wrist! We dug and dug and, well you get the point. A year later we still had sprouts coming up from bits of roots that we'd missed.

Here is how I've learned you can get rid of it. Now, up until this point I had NEVER used herbicides or pesticides in the garden. Here's what I did and you can do to get rid of it. Put about an inch of Round Up Weed and Grass Killer Super Concentrate (you could also use Brush B Gone) in a clear plastic container with a tight fitting lid like you might get at the deli with potato salad. Cut a slit in the lid and insert the tips of the vine in the solution when in active growth (has leaves on it and the leaves need to be in the solution). Leave the vines in the solution for 48 hours and then cut the vines near the lid. To remove the vine from the lid, be sure and take the container to a safe place so that no solution splashes on anything precious. You can reuse the solution until it is all absorbed. Everytime I find a new sprout I do this same procedure. So far there have been no sprouts from areas that were treated this way.

The only vines I can think of for trees is clematis. The smaller varieties (smaller in size, not flower) can be grown easily into small trees or large shrubs. I grow one on my lilac bush. It uses the tree for support and doesn't choke the tree.

Another vine I've seen grown in trees is hydrangea vine. There are two natives and a Japanese variety. This site can give you better info then I can.

Old 04-23-08, 05:56 PM
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Passion flower can grow in a bush. When I was a kid, one grew in a quince bush.

Photo Credit: andycarvin@flickr

There are about 500 species in the passion flower family (passiflora). This is the one in the bush when I was a kid.
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