Eradicating Trumpet vine

laceyvail(6A, WV)July 27, 2006

This is the most intractable problem I have ever faced in gardening. I have been clearing and landscaping my yard out in the country and working towards a corner where there is a huge multistemmed trumpet vine intertwined with multiflora rose and poison ivy. It's been there many, many years. The soil is sandy and there are huge rocks in that corner.

This year I have finally started working into the mess. The multiflora rose is easy to remove and so is the poison ivy. I have been using a great product called Vine-X that comes in a bottle with an applicator brush. But the trumpet vine!!! With great difficulty I have been applying the Vine-X all season, twisting myself into contortions to reach as much of the thicker stems as I can as I make my way into the interior and trying to get the stems near the base. And I'm trying to attack it from all sides, though some are much more difficult than others to reach. But what's happening is that, like the many headed Hydra of Greek mythology, the more I apply and kill one stem, the more new roots seem to shoot out into long cleared areas and produce new shoots. These shoots are small and if I hit them with the Vine-X, they die, but they don't carry the poison very far into the root.

I spoke with the Vine-X people today, and while they assured me I had the best product on the market (and I do believe them), that trumpet vines have proven pretty much unbeatable unless you can dig out all the roots--a nearly impossible task for this 61 year old woman who, though hard working for long hours in the garden, just can't undertake something like that.

Has anyone out there any real advice? I can't even give up the project of clearing the corner now because the vine has started to come into the previously cleared and planted areas. It seems as if I can't stop and I can't go forward.

Is this going to be like the war on terror? A rest of my life project that I can't win but can't stop fighting either?

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cbars(z5b6a MO-Kansas City)

Is there a reason you are not using round-up? Seems like it would certainly be a lot easier to use.


    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 4:05PM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

Gary, I'm not using Round up because it would have no more effect on a trumpet vine than spraying it with water. I'm using the most powerful vine and woody plant poison available--and it is having no effect. I'm hoping someone out there has personal experience with eradicating one. (That is, successful personal experience!)

    Bookmark   July 28, 2006 at 11:17AM
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Cut down all the stems as far as you can and IMMEDIATLY pour or brush on Round-up concentrate straight - don't mix with water. That should do it.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2006 at 1:15PM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

silkysacto, do you have personal experience with this technique? All information that I can get says this will not work for trumpet vine, especially in that round up is not terrible effective on woody plants--it's a broadleaf herbicide.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2006 at 6:13AM
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I'm having the same problem with the trumpet vines, nothing works! I've cut them all the way back and injected a herbicide into the stump with a syringe and they still come back!!!!!I've been fighting a losing battle for the last 7 years. I'd love to find a way to finally eradicate this darn vine from my yard.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2006 at 10:51AM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Does the Vine-X come in a concentrated form? Silkysacto is correct in the method....but you do have to be very quick about it....while it is still "pumping" fluids....

This is usually a job for two person cuts, the next immediately applies the concentrate (best with a brush).

You can also check with a local farm store to see what stronger chemicals they may have....

    Bookmark   August 1, 2006 at 11:35AM
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sherlock_holmes(z6a PA)

I hate to mention it, as it is a last resort type of idea. But have you tried putting a thin layer of Rock Salt, what's used for melting ice, around the base of the plant and watering every now and then to let it seep into the ground around the vine's roots? Salt will usually kill anything.

Unfortunately, it also tends to render the ground sterile for a while that it's applied on. So I only recommend this as a last ditch effort to eradicate the Trumpet Vine.

If the procedure is a success, all you would have to do then is one or both of two things. To make the soil usable again, you could water it daily for several weeks on end to dilute and filter away the salt. You could also just replace the soil that you salted and bring in fresh, fertile soil to start over with.

I know for a fact that salt will sterilize soil for some time because my father once dumped some softener salt from the Water Purification System at his house onto the lawn and the area was dead for quite some time. However, eventually the rain diluted the salt and the grass grew back.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2006 at 1:19PM
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We had a problem with locust trees that suckered all over the yard after my husband cut them down last summer. I kept hitting the stumps and suckers with Bayer's Brush and Stump Killer. Haven't seen any suckers this year! Now I'm trying to kill a bittersweet vine the same way. Stupid me, I planted it in hopes of getting the berries, but it never produced. It's trying to choke the tree it was planted next to. Past experience tells me to keep applying the stump killer product and eventually it should succumb.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2006 at 8:02PM
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Has anyone tried using an aspirin or other type of "chemical" solution that would be toxic to plants but not to people, animals or water tables?
We live very near Alexander Springs in the Ocala Natl. Forest, (Florida). Our water table here is fed by that same spring. In our area the wells enter the water table at 75-85 feet in depth. So we are extremely careful about anything we use.
I have been able to get roots out up to 2 feet down in ground by soaking ground first. The roots are joined in a network that can be quite deep underground though they always grow back.
It is easier and more effective during winter months when it isn't growing.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2011 at 2:02PM
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I live in the central San Joaquin Valley in California & was able to finally kill the five established vines that were taking over my flower beds & lawns. This is how I did it with the advice of my local garden center:

1. Wait until early fall or end of growing season when the plant is storing all it's energy for next year's growth and has all it's leaves still on it. Spray the entire vine liberally with Roundup (Yuck-but it works). Two applications may be needed. DO NOT PRUNE OR CUT THE PLANT. LET ALL THE LEAVES DIE ON THE VINE OVER THE WINTER.

2. In Spring you should notice that no new growth is coming out. I waited until early summer to be sure no growth was coming out of the vines before digging up the plants. When I finally dug out the root ball it was dried out and obviously dead!

3. The mistake I was making before was trying to cut the main stock way down & then digging out the plant while it was still alive. I found that no matter how deep I dug, I couldn't get all the little pieces of the root that break off and then start the growing cycle again. You have to put up with the unsightly mess once you spray the plant and be patient before you dig it out, but it's worth it! Hooray, no more trumpet vine!


    Bookmark   June 30, 2011 at 11:46AM
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