In a previous post, I mentioned that some vines are killing my trees. I have been searching up and down for an answer, but it turns out, what I am looking at are wild grape vines. Apparently, wild grapes are becoming an invasive species in WV and can grow up to 15 meters. And sure enough, they kill trees. On the edges of the forest, its recommended to keep them, but in the center of the forest, it is recommend they are removed.
Grape vines are apparently pretty patient; they may start growing with a seedling and grow with the tree to the top of the canopy. Once there, they grow outward from tree to tree spreading its leaves, they starve the trees around it of light, and thats one way they kill the hard woods. Another issue is the increased leaves of the tree at the top becomes an issue in the wind as it becomes a parachute, and during the winter, the extra surface area captures more snow and ice making the tree even more top heavy.
So now that I know that, time to start killing some grape vines. Apparently the grapes are very shade intolerant, so just cutting the base of them in the forest should do the trick. Where they are in the sun, the stumps will need to be treated with some chemicals to kill it the rest of the way of. I will probably get back on this project next spring.