Please help identifying this vine/weed.

Asked December 26, 2018, 9:01 AM EST

I believe I have some vines that are doing damage to trees. I have noticed a large amount of tree limbs/branches that have broken off that have dropped to the ground or are currently caught up in vines that have grown up into the tree. Some vines are growing up the tree while others are girdling the trees. Some vines are bare this winter while another seems to be holding onto their green leaves.

Richmond County New York

1 Response

Sadly, there are a number of plants that can cause this type of damage to surrounding trees. It will be easier to identify the culprit when there are more leaves or fruit present. A good guess would be Celastrus orbiculatus which can look very much like this. The leaves of that plant vary considerably.

Take photos of the young shoots' form of attachment to trunk as well as leaves and the leaf arrangement along the stem during the growing season for a clearer identification.

More information on Celastrus orbiculatus is available here: https://wiki.bugwood.org/Celastrus_orbiculatus