A greenbrier from Kevin in upstate SC

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Viney with thorns, growing on CL fence. Sprouts out of ground and “searches” for something to climb. Cut it down, it grows right back. Drench it with RoundUp, it will die off but another climber or three takes its place. Property is pine forest with thick undergrowth that’s been feral for about 20 years.

Hi Kevin,

this vine is called greenbrier, and is disliked by many because of the deep scratches it can cause.  The technical name is Smilax, probably Smilax bona-nox.  There are several species in our area and they can have large woody underground root-like stems.  They are hard to eliminate, probably best done by digging them out.  Birds scatter the seeds.


Steven R. Hill, Ph.D., Botanist, SCNPS

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