How do you control Virginia Creeper?


I find the Virginia Creeper to be a very invasive plant. It climbs up my lilacs 20 ft high, basically anything that isn’t evergreen. I went to trim my forsythia and half of what I cut off were Creeper vines. I also battled Norway Maples and the small leafed rose that are defined as invasive but what’s up with this vine? 


Jonathan Foster, Home Horticulture Outreach Professional

Virginia creeper/woodbine (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) is a highly adaptable, native Maine plant that thrives in a number of environments, and provides multiple animal species with food in the wild. Because of this, it’s often used to reclaim ground to fill in holes in the landscape or to effect an erosion control strategy. Also because of this, it can get out of hand under the right conditions, and it sounds like you may have them.

The Rutgers Univ Extension has an excellent page on controlling Virginia creeper if it establishes itself as an unwanted weed. As always, if you choose to pursue a chemical intervention, please read carefully and follow conscientiously all instructions on the label. More is not better, and because some of these treatments are broad spectrum and non-selective, a highly targeted approach is always best.

Good luck, and happy gardening.