Mile-a-minute vine

Study up … this is serious.  Mile-a-minute vine – acronym MAM – is no joking matter.  Mile-a-minute vine (Persicaria perfoliata) came by its common name quite naturally – it can grow 6 inches a day.  This highly invasive vine, aka mile-a-minute weed or Devil’s tearthumb –has thumb-tearing barbs along its stem; it is a devil of a job to clear it away from any plant to which it has taken hold.

I’ve seen it and removed it from gardens I care for, but until now I was not aware of requests to report all possible sightings.  Mile-a-minute vine has been officially identified in 15 CT towns.  Horticulturists see it as a serious enough threat to devote a website to the identification, reporting, and eradication of mile-a-minute vine.

I’ve mentioned some of Connecticut’s invasive plants in previous posts.  Eradication of these non-native threats requires time and commitment – as does anything worth doing.  But first you need to know what is invasive and how best to remove and destroy each plant that threatens to overtake our native species.  I cannot urge this strongly enough.

I’m devoting part of this rainy, foggy day to throw on a raincoat, waterproof shoes, and a pair of sturdy gloves so I can scout for, remove, and report any  mile-a-minute  vines I find. But I’ll also be clearing bittersweet vines, Japanese barberry and multiflora rose.  I would like to think that my soon-to-be-born granddaughter will be able to enjoy the bloom of our native mountain laurels (Kalmia latifolia) when she is grown, just as we enjoy them now.  When you think of future generations, it tends to give you some incentive to protect the things we have.



Filed under Gardening, General, Techniques

6 responses to “Mile-a-minute vine

  1. hendu

    And there is the first reference. Very nice

  2. Once again we are thinking about the same topic…I just got an e-mail from the CT Invasive Plant Working Group about Mile-A-Minute vine and am working on a post about it.

    At the Sustainability Expo last month that postcard with the Mile-A-Minute photo was at almost every booth. Invasives are a hot topic, and a big issue, here in CT. It’s amazing how much energy is put into removing them. As you rightly mentioned, it’s a difficult and time consuming task but one that is worth the effort.

  3. joenesgarden

    I just spent about 2 hours combing part of our woods for invasives. Pulled a lot of bittersweet, some barberry – I’ve been pretty relentless about keeping that under control – and some multiflora rose. I even found poison ivy that I tagged for herbicide application. PI is the one vine I’ll attack with chemicals. All these invasives are trying to get a root-hold on our property, but I’m fighting them off. Thank goodness I found no mile-a-minute vine.

  4. I know this is an invasive vine, but it’s so pretty! 🙂

    I love your blog, just saying Hi.

  5. Pingback: Invasive Plants in the Nursery « A Garden of Possibilities

  6. Pingback: Invasive Plants in the Nursery

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