I am in the minority in that I LOVE trumpet vine flowers. Unfortunately, I have to hurt the one I love.
As long as I can remember, summer in Virginia means spotting the salmon-colored trumpets growing along the sides of Highway 460, Routes 29 and 15, and Interstates 81 and 66.
When I lived in Fairfax City, a favorite part of a route I walked included a large, overgrown vine hanging over a fence. I even planted a native sprout that a farmer gave me when we lived in Appomattox. (That particular vine never grew well, and this is the first year it flowered.)
Well, as with so many other rampant growers, trumpet vine is hard to control, and it spreads rapidly and easily. Our farm, which was empty for a few years, is overrun with the stuff, both the native salmon, Campsis radicans, and the yellow, Campsis radicans var. flava. Sprouts appear in other beds, along the eaves of the barn, and random spots in the lawn. It has truly overrun the place!
Now that the blossoms are just about done here in this part of the Shenandoah Valley, it’s time to craft our plan of attack. Weed whacker, “idiot stick,” and then finally the mower with the bag attached to get what’s on the ground. The old barn patio and roof… that’s going to be a lot of careful cutting with hedge clippers. We may try to keep one small area of the vine — it is pretty — but if we do, it’s going to require constant vigilance.
Oh, and supposedly hummingbirds like trumpet creeper vine. I’ve seen hummers checking out the Mimosa tree and the black and blue salvia, but I’ve never seen one so much as glance at the trumpet creeper. Have you had a difference experience, or are my birds just finicky? – Stacey Morgan Smith*** This personal blog is comprised solely of the opinions, views, projects, and travels of its author, Stacey Morgan Smith. She is lucky enough to have loving family and friends whom she drags along with her on her adventures and whom she puts to work on her little farm. She uses this blog to help promote living in the mountains of the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, from Roanoke to the Potomac River.**