When my kids were growing up they all had the pleasure of being taught kindergarten by the same wonderful teacher, Ms. Guertler. Ms. Guertler was a nature loving, recycle loving, earth loving, turn off the lights when you leave the room kind of gal. She would often lead the class on walks around the neighborhood pointing out nests and plants and types of trees. If there was trash on the ground, the kids were encouraged to pick it up and bring it back with them for proper trash can disposal. Even years later, if we were at a park, my kids would pick up trash because Ms. Guertler would have wanted them to.
One of the other things she pointed out was how to save a tree from honeysuckle vines. Bush honeysuckle, which comes up as a weed around me, climbs everywhere. It wraps itself, even around the smallest sapling and will choke out the new growth. If you cut the vine at the bottom of the tree, where it’s getting started, the tree will have a chance.
I remember my youngest telling me more than once that I had to chop a vine off a tree or the tree would die…even when I had nothing to chop the vine with. This is where distraction comes into play.
So now I’m getting the chance to redeem myself years later by ripping out some honeysuckle vines. If you get the root, the plant won’t come back next year, but trimming the vines will keep them in control.
For this project you will need a bunch of vines (and a hurricane lamp). By swiping your hand down the vine, the leaves will come right off. Any other branches that stick out can be trimmed off.
You’ll want to use the vines the same day you pick them while they are still super pliable.
Starting at the bottom of the hurricane lamp, or cylinder vase, start wrapping your honeysuckle. I held the end of the honeysuckle vine for a few rows until the next rows would hold the end in place. When you’re at the end of a vine, just tuck it into the rows you just wrapped.
If the vines want to pop out, a little dab of hot glue can hold the ends in place. Overlap as much as you want until you get the effect you want.
Trim off any wayward branches and you’re done. While the honeysuckle vine looks and acts a lot like a grapevine, the vine is much thinner but it can be used anywhere you would see grapevines being used.
It doesn’t take long for the green vines to turn brown.
See, Ms. Guertler, I was paying attention in class while I was volunteering and I’m not too old to learn something new.
Since I’m trimming, I just may have another honeysuckle project coming.
One other thing, if you don’t know the difference between honeysuckle and poison ivy leaves, you may just want to skip this project. 🙂
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