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University of Illinois Extension
Vines: Climbers & Twiners

Invasive vs. Aggressive

Keep in mind though that a plant can be invasive in one region of the country and not in another.

Some vines are considered invasive meaning they can readily spread into natural areas and pose a threat to disrupting ecosystems there. Every effort has been made to not include such vines that are on the invasive plant list in Illinois in the suggested vines for the home garden list found in the Plant Directory.

It is always a good idea to check with local natural resource personnel or your Extension Service to find out which vines might be on the list locally.

Also, don’t confuse aggressive with invasive. Aggressive means the plant can spread fast enough within the garden as to cause issues to other garden areas where the plant is not wanted or is intended to be growing.

trumpet vine are very aggressiveVines such as trumpet vine or hops can fall into this category because of their very aggressive habit to sucker freely through the garden allowing it to spread. While they can be “controlled” through diligent removal of suckers as they appear, it will be an ongoing garden chore.

These vines can be especially troublesome in small space gardens. So, when selecting a vine don’t fall in love with it immediately just because it has attractive flowers or foliage before finding out if it has a tendency to sucker or may just become too big for your space. Once planted and once it starts to sucker it may be too late deal with before it has taken over a good portion of the garden and becomes extremely difficult to eradicate.