When we were driving past the pine plantation on a recent visit to Roundrock, Libby pointed out one of the trees, noting that some vine was engulfing it. I looked and looked, from the comfort of the truck, but could not see anything. Soon I forgot all about what she’d said.
Later, when we were actually walking among the pines, checking for survivors — and we had 100 percent survival in the plantation area — Libby tried once again to point out the vine wreathed pine, taking me by the hand and taking me over to it. And then, I saw what you see above. I’m not sure how I missed it before, but there it was, plain as day.
Rather than yank the vine from the tree, which can rip off bark and even branches, we decided to simply chop the vine at the base and let it die on its own. The only problem was that there was a nice chicken wire fence protecting it. Libby’s solution was to cut through the chicken wire (with the handy loppers) and then cut the vine. And we did.
As I recall, it was a trumpet creeper, which I’d never seen at Roundrock until this year.
These flowers were blooming in early summer at the very back of the pine plantation, so I guess along with shortleaf pine trees, the soil in this area favors trumpet creepers.