Vines imperiling trees at eastern Iowa park

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — Rangers are asking for help in tearing away bittersweet vines that are imperiling trees at a park on the south side of Dubuque.

Ranger Wayne Buchholtz at Mines of Spain State Recreation Area told Cedar Rapids television station KCRG (http://bit.ly/19mFGgm ) that the vines grow rapidly. They can totally cover trees, killing them because the vines block the tree leaves from sunlight.

Rangers say the only way to protect the trees is to rip out the vines by hand, so they’re asking for the public’s help doing that on Aug. 24, starting at 8 a.m.

Bittersweet vines are used for holiday decorations, but the Iowa Natural Resources Department says people should use only the American bittersweet vine that’s native to Iowa. The Oriental bittersweet vine is aggressive and invasive.

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Information from: KCRG-TV, http://www.kcrg.com

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