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Mr. Smarty Plants - Will trumpet vine strangle tulip poplar in Elkview WV?

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Thursday - April 08, 2010

From: Elkview, WV
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Vines
Title: Will trumpet vine strangle tulip poplar in Elkview WV?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a trumpet vine that I planted to grow up a tulip poplar. I did not find info that it may damage the tree prior to doing this but have recently been told that it will "strangle" the tree. Is this true?

ANSWER:

The best thing we can suggest is that you read our webpage on Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper), which, while it refers to the plant as aggressive and being capable of damaging wood, stone and brick, does not actually say it is a tree killer. Unfortunately, some other websites are not so forgiving.

From Dave's Garden Forum, note the many negative comments.

Floridata doesn't like to say bad things about any plants, but admits this one can be an invasive pain. 

From a website called old fashioned living Growing and Controlling Trumpet Vines: "Do not use a tree as a pole for the trumpet vine to climb. Eventually it will strangle the tree. Use an actual pole or fence instead and again, prune in spring or fall, or even during mild winters."

So, next let's talk about your Liriodendron tulipifera (tuliptree). Follow the link to our website on that tree, and then decide, which is it going to be?  The trumpet vine does have gorgeous flowers and attracts hummingbirds, but we're from Texas - trees are irreplaceable. You might permit the vine to grow somewhere else, but we would definitely recommend getting it off that tree while you still can. And you will have to watch closely to keep seedlings from getting started back up the tree, as well as other plants in your garden. 

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Campsis radicans

Campsis radicans

Liriodendron tulipifera

Liriodendron tulipifera

 

 

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