Strange things in my yard

So if you’ve read the “something interesting” thread you know that I’m a new homeowner. I’ve got a tree in my yard that’s covered in vines, and someone over there said I should just get some weed killer, spray around the base of the tree, and the tree should be healthy enough to shrug that off while the vine will die.

He hasn’t seen my vines.

Here’s a wider shot from the other side, this tree is covered in vines.

And, for reference, here’s the base of one of the vines with my foot in the picture to give you a sense of scale.

Now, we’re in the northeast, but these seem like amazon rainforest-type vines. Do I need a machete? It seems like it’s going to take major work to de-vine this tree. Any suggestions?

Also, in the front yard I found these:

I’m betting there used to be a tree on that spot and these are growing off the still-buried roots. Should I just dig these up? Leave them? Get a pig?

I haven’t had a yard since I moved out of my parents’ house. It’s a strange new world.

If anyone in your family starts acting strange, RUN!

That was me making that suggestion but I didn’t realize you were talking about jungle level vines. Good luck with that!

Nice view though… Damn.

Could it be kudzu?

I know they have this a lot in the south and it spreads like crazy and consumes trees, bushes, what have you.

edit: don’t know about the mushrooms

The fungus thing looks like stuff I see from time to time in my yard. No big deal - dig it up.

Vines are fairly simple to resolve - just cut them (with a hand saw or a pole saw). I would cut once high, and once low, with the high cut to get the vine out of the way and reduce temptations for your kids or neighborhood kids. When cutting over your head, wear safety goggles - I was doing this without goggles (I had my ordinary glasses on), and a bit of sawdust or something got in my eye and scratched it - VERY painful and led to a trip to a local medical facility.

Cutting is only a temporary solution though. Even the small vines that I sprayed on my tree have recovered. They were dead for weeks - and now there’s new green growth visible. Damn you, nature!

After you cut the vine you should liberally dose the bit that goes back into the ground with Round Up, otherwise it will just resprout.

Looks like virginia creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia). Do you have a leaf from the vine?

Those vines look like the same bastards that grow in my wooded back yard and climb up my trees. Do they spread out in all directions from a central root base? Do they just wind up and around the trees,without actually putting tendrils or roots into the tree bark? And if you cut one at the groud, are you able to pull it free from the tree fairly easily provided it’s not wound all around in the treetop? If so, you’ve got the same stuff I do, and you’re in for a lot of hard work.

I usually wait until late fall or early spring when the vines (and trees) are leafless. Then I cut the vines at the base (ground) and pull them out of the trees. Unless you dig the root base out of the ground, they will grow back, usually by the next year, though not as thick and crazy as before. I’ve tried digging out the root system on ours, but they’ve been there for many many years and it’s pretty much an impossible task at this point without heavy equipment.

I use a pruning saw to cut the vines, it works really well even on the thickest ones. Any vines that I can’t pull from the treetops I’ll cut about 4 feet off the ground and leave there. They die over the winter and tend to come down by themselves in springtime storms. Good luck!

Burn your yard. Salt the land with bleach. Move and tell no one about the things you saw.

I had a tree with vines like that. We needed to have some other tree cutting done, and just had the tree guys cut it out for us.

That said, once you cut it off low it will die on top. All you have to do then is keep cutting back any excess new growth. We get that all the time, and its easy.

That picture with my foot is about 10 feet away from the tree and where the vine goes into the ground. The entire tree is covered with a dense set of leaves, and the only reason you can actually see the vines in the first picture is that’s the shady side. The other side is the sunny side and you can just make out a tree shaped object in the middle of all that green.

Also, it looks like they allowed a perimeter of weeds and brambles to grow up around the trees (to keep the neighborhood kids from climbing the vines? If I were 10, that tree would be irresistible.) so before I can even get to the trunk of the tree I’ve got to cut back this 6-foot high undergrowth.

This tree is also on the side of my house. My neighbor’s yard is on the other side of that tree.

I’ll take a pic of a leaf today. I’m actually not going to get to this until well after we’ve moved in, so hearing that I shouldn’t deal with it until the leaves are off is a good thing. I’m actually procrastinating now, because I’ve got to go strip more wallpaper but my arms are killing me from doing this all weekend.

It’s too big (vine size) to be kudzu or creeper, or at least looks way too big. Post the closeup pic of the leaf when you get a chance and be careful since it could end up being something like poison oak or similar (though the leaves don’t look like it in your first set of pics.)

I had a run in with a tree with poison oak vines that even bigger than those and it was not fun. At all. You can definitely cut the vine to start killing it off, just be careful what you cut with and getting any of the cut on you until after you verify what the plant is.

You’re going to have to rip that vine out of the ground. You have no other choice. You will be dealing with new growth, and very quickly I may add, before you even know it.

Congratulations on being a land owner. It’s constant work, but if you do the right work first, you’ll do less work later. Take the time to get that vine up out of the ground. You have a lot of brush around that area too, so if you want to make it look clean, and work safely, AND have some more usable yard space, clear out all the brush and bushes. Bushes should also be pulled out of the ground.

That fungus picture looks just like mushrooms when they’ve died. Although I’m not certain they’re mushrooms, just some other type of similar fungus.

I very much doubt that he needs to rip the vines from the ground.

Cut them to the ground once. They’ll probably grow back to some extent (but they won’t be covering his trees in a matter of months or anything). Cut them back again. Do it a few times, and you’ll pretty much have killed the vines. i.e. The roots can survive the loss of the upper part (with leaves), but they can’t survive indefinitely.

If the roots are easy to pull up, then sure, do it. But I doubt that will be the case. Whereas cutting them off initially, then monitoring them and cutting off new growth a few times until it stops is not that hard.

Re-iterating an earlier point - if there are likely to be kids in the vicinity of the trees, you don’t want the old vines exposed as a tempting climbing target. Cut the old vines high or pull them down if that’s possible or whatever.

That’s how bad mine were when we first moved in. The developer (newly built house) had just cleared the land in back to the treeline, and left everything beyond alone, so there was this literal wall of vines/leaves strung between the trees. It looked like I was hiding an ammo dump behind a camo curtain back there.

Waiting for fall/winter makes removal much easier and cleaner, not to mention far less sweaty. I’d recommend renting a brush cutter for the brambles and other bushes they’ve let grow there, and possibly a roto-tiller if you plan to keep that area brush free to plant grass in the spring.

Why aren’t you up there building a tree house? Those vines provide an awesome camo in which to hide your new fortress!

Cut the vines, when new growth appears, spray a 5% solution of CrossBow on the leaves. It will kill the plant all the way down to the root system.

Crossbow works very well for woody plants. It will not harm grass, etc. Works excellent on anything woody (including a number of weeds such as thistle or black-berry bushes) - however, for trunk sizes > 3 inces, use higher concentrates. You can pour Crossbow on a freshly covered stump (about a cup of non-diluted) to kill the tree so it doesn’t resprout.

This is my solution for everything. Hook that bitch up to a 4x4 and put it in low range, creep forward until it rips out of the ground by its roots. Make sure to water the ground really well beforehand so it’s nice and soft.

BTW - to get the vines out of the tree, with vines that size I’d recommend an arborist. I don’t think you’ll be pulling those out easily - even a truck or tractor could have a hard time and the odds of a large branch coming down in the process would be high.

It’s a lot easier (and therefore cheaper) to have them cut out while they are green than if you cut and wait a year to call an arborist.