Grapevine Cutting

Grapevines and poison ivy vines can cause serious damage to standing trees. If allowed to develop, a grapevine can actually kill a tree by completely taking over the canopy and "stealing" sunlight from the tree. Typically, Virginia creeper vines will not damage a tree, as they tend to live mostly in the lower portions of a tree. Obviously, caution should be taken when cutting or otherwise handling poison ivy vines.

Any "clinging to the tree type" vines over 2 inches diameter and all grape vines (flaky bark & free hanging) should be severed. They should be cut 4' above the ground so that they swing free from the vine's stump. If the stump does not fall to the ground, it should be cut again within 1 foot of the ground (this will help reduce resprouting due to increased shade). It is recommended that all vines be removed from the majority of a woodlot. Grapevines may be left uncut on woods edges and a few small interior clusters due to their high wildlife food value. Winter is an ideal time to cut vines, as they are much easier to see from a distance. Cutting vines alone will only kill them where complete shade is provided by a very dense cover of vegetation. It will also take 2 to 3 years for the vine to die this way. If some light penetrates to the forest floor, chemical treatment of the stump is likely necessary to prevent resprouting.

Killing vines with chemical application

(This practice should not be done in the spring during high sap flow as the effectiveness will be sacrificed.) If there is not sufficient shade or the woods is going to be harvested or thinned within the 2-3 year window needed for shade control, a chemical stump treatment may be used to control and kill the vines. To stump treat you merely have to cut the vine and apply the herbicide to the fresh cut (a fresh cut is considered to be before the stump dries i.e. within 2-3 hours of cut). This may be done using a brush or hand spray application.

Arsenal4-6 ounces of Arsenal to 1 gallon of water
Banvel CSTReady To Use no mixing required
CrossbowMix 5 1/3 fluid ounces per 1 gallon of diesel or kerosene
Garlon 3GReady To Use no mixing required
Pathway RTUReady To Use no mixing required
Roundup UltraMix 1 part water with 1 part Roundup concentrate
Weedone CBReady To Use no mixing required

Always apply pesticides according to the label instructions. THE LATEST PESTICIDE LABEL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE FROM MSU EXTENSION, PHONE:(734) 997-1678.

Washtenaw County Conservation District
7203 Jackson Rd.
Ann Arbor, MI 48103-9506 [Map]
Phone: (734) 761-6721 x 5
Fax: (855) 665-5586
Open Mon. - Fri., 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.