Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
1 rating

Tuesday - August 04, 2015

From: Oklahoma City, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Problem Plants, Vines
Title: Controlling Cocculus carolinus vines
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in Oklahoma City and want to rid my yard and flowerbeds of Cocculus Carolinus vines, I already have a infestation, I cant count the number of vines that were already established before I found out what the vine was.,,. I have tried brush killer and even that doesn't seem to work.. I don't know what else to try..

ANSWER:

The roots of Cocculus carolinus (Carolina snailseed) are shallow and sucker easily thus making the vine difficult to eliminate.  I know that you said you have used brush killer (e.g., Roundup or equivalent glyphosate herbicide) but I suspect that you sprayed it on the plant.  The Carolina snailseed leaves and stems are relatively tough and may not readily absorb the herbicide.  Instead of spraying, here is another suggestion. 

  1.  Cut the vines very near the ground, and
  2.  Immediately after cutting each vine, use a cheap foam brush and paint the surface of the cut stem left in the ground with an appropriate herbicide.  The reason for the immediate painting is that many plants rapidly seal cells at the site of an injury to protect themselves and the sealing would inhibit the uptake of the herbicide.

When using chemical control please use caution and follow the safety instructions given with the chemicals to protect yourself, other plants you want to keep, and the environment.

 

More Problem Plants Questions

Should Mexican milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) not be used to attract Monarch butterflies?
November 20, 2015 - Should I remove Asclepias curassavica (Mexican milkweed) in my garden for threat of OE parasitic protozoan threat to Monarch butterflies? Is this threat as widespread as Chronicle implies? I had great...
view the full question and answer

Drought tolerant grass for small lawn from Woodbury TX
June 07, 2014 - Trying to establish small lawn area, needs to be drought tolerant, water wise. Have tried Turffalo with poor results. Recommendation please.
view the full question and answer

Will catalpa roots damage a nearby swimming pool?
July 13, 2013 - Will a catalpa tree cause problems to my swimming pool? It is 8 feet away and I cut all the branches off every fall. It then grows back to about 6 feet in diameter an makes a great garden feature but ...
view the full question and answer

Getting Rid of Firecracker Flower
July 16, 2015 - We live in the Tampa area of Florida. We planted Russelia equisetiformis under some palm trees 10 years ago. It has grown deep among the palm tree roots. We want to kill the Russelia without harming ...
view the full question and answer

Toxicity of catalpa wood?
June 05, 2012 - Is the sawdust from cutting up a catalpa tree or the smoke from burning the wood toxic? Thank you,
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.