Save our Trees Campaign

Do you have trees that looks like this? These trees are covered in Wintercreeper (Euonymus fortunei), one of the most invasive plants in Knox County, and these trees need your help!

The Knox County CISMA is starting a campaign raising awareness about the impacts of Wintercreeper (Euonymus fortunei), one of the most invasive plants in Knox County. Wintercreeper can climb up to 70 ft., and its vines can grow to 7 inches in diameter or more! This invasive vine can quickly outgrow small trees as well as add weight and smother larger trees. If you want your trees to be healthy, remove Wintercreeper from them!

A cut stump treated Wintercreeper vine with a section (“cookie”) removed.

Wintercreeper Control Methods
Manual: Most manual methods are not effective because Wintercreeper has long stems that root into the ground at multiple locations and mature plants have large, extensive root systems. Small patches that can be pulled or dug up, but they should be bagged or allow to dry out before disposing. Stem fragments can reroot, if conditions are right.
Chemical: Cut stump treating large vines is very effective. Make sure to take a “cookie” out of climbing stems and treat the lower cut surface with an herbicide permitted for cut stem treatment, like glyphosate. For large patches of Wintercreeper spreading as groundcover, foliar herbicide applications are the best method. Using a 3% solution of a product with triclopyr ester as an active ingredient plus a non-ionic surfactant works well. If applied in fall, minimal damage will occur to surrounding vegetation.

*Always follow herbicide label instructions. Failure to do so is against the law.

Wintercreeper about 2 months after being sprayed with a foliar application of triclopyr*.
The extensive root system of a mature Wintercreeper plant.

For more information on Wintercreeper and other invasive species, visit the Knox County CISMA website ( or follow us on Facebook (

If you would like help identifying Wintercreeper and other invasive plants, contact Will Drews, the Knox County SWCD Natural Resource Specialist, at or by calling 812-882-8210 x 3408.

For a printable/shareable Save Our Trees Campaign flyer, click here.

Back to CISMA Homepage.