What is it?
Winter creeper was introduced from China in the early 1900s as an ornamental. Unfortunately, it escaped the confines of the garden and now outcompetes native vegetation for space, light, nutrients, and moisture. The plant is well suited for invasion as birds spread its seeds, and it can also reproduce vegetatively. It forms a very dense ground cover that eliminates native wildflowers. Its thick carpet of leafy vines impedes recruitment of trees and shrubs as well. Winter creeper can grow as a shrub to about three feet. As a vine it can climb vertically for 40 to 70 feet into trees and can overtop small ones, causing decreased vigor or death. Winter creeper is a perennial and can tolerate a wide variety of growing conditions from full sun to deep shade and acidic to basic soils. Openings in the forest canopy from disturbances such as windfalls, ice storms, or mechanical removal of the overstory can hasten the spread of this vigorous invader.


How do I control it?
For more control methods, click the Kentucky Woodlands Magazine article link to the right.

Winter Creeper

KWM Article