By Ted Farnworth
“They grow up so fast.” I’ve heard that said several times in the past couple of weeks after the arrival of my first grandson, Benjamin Edward. Yes, “our Ben” has been putting on steady weight since his premature arrival, but his growth pales in comparison with the dog-strangling vine (DSV) growing in the ravine at the Fletcher Wildlife Garden. Just last week there were a few cute green shoots peeking up from the soil (see Delicate green monster). This week, the few have become many, and the green shoots are now taking on the characteristic DSV appearance. They are growing fast as this photo (right) will illustrate.
Once they get started, the root system explodes, and it is no wonder the plant takes off so quickly.
Hence, the thinking behind the shovel method of control. If the growth of the roots is supporting the rapid growth of the plant, mincing up the roots around the stem with a shovel could hopefully kill the plant. That’s the theory anyway. We will see how well this approach works in the coming weeks.
So, it looks like I will have my hands full just trying to keep a small plot in the ravine DSV-free.