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Exotic and beautiful tree but a real nuisance

We moved into our house a year ago and realised immediately that there were too many trees in what is a small garden measuring approximately 50ft x 30ft. We counted 12 trees in all. We viewed the house in the spring when the trees weren’t so obvious so it was a bit of a shock when we saw the trees in full leaf for the first time.

However, there is one tree which we are particularly concerned about.  It is very beautiful and quite exotic looking specimen but it’s a real bandit and lnew little plants are growing all over the place, including our neighbour’s garden where it has become quite prolific.

I want to know how best to deal with it.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what it might be and how to get rid of it?

In fact I was watching a recorded episode of the Dog Whisperer last night on TV and I’m sure I spotted it on there. If I’m right, there seems to be quite a few of these trees in gardens in LA.





  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,743

    rhus typhina. 

    Lovely autumn colour but spreads by suckers. Can become a bit of a nuisance.

  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,391

    Verdun will be on this one like a shot! image

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    It does have the unfortunate habit of throwing up suckers when it is stressed. It is a nice tree though. Any hope of just dealing with the suckers and keeping the tree?
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Love love love this tree! 

  • GardenmaidenGardenmaiden Posts: 1,126

    I had that in my previous garden. I used to cut it down to nothing because strong wind used to snap all branches. It did used to send up runners through a lined six inch deep path through to the lawn and I just cut them to ground level.

    It does have lovely autumn colour until the leaves drop off.

  • GardenmaidenGardenmaiden Posts: 1,126

    To the left you've got a yellow buddleia, worth keeping as you don't see many yellow ones around, and a possible crab apple or normal apple to the right

  • Rip out the suckers, if main tree healthy. Cutting doesn't do much good to suckers. A lovely tree and can be pruned easily.
  • Thanks Gardenmaiden. We also have another yellow buddleia at the front of the house. The bees love them. The crab apple is a favourite a little later in the year when the fruit becomes soft enough to attract the attention of blackbirds.

    Regarding the rhus typhina I would really like to get rid of it, as pretty as it is, because the last thing we need is a thug of a tree in a small garden. The suckers have already taken hold quite badly in our neighbour's garden.

    Could I chop it down, drill a hole in the stump and poison it or will that just make the problem worse?

    Thanks to everyone here for coming to my aid but it does seem to be very much a Marmite tree with some people loving it and others hating it in equal measure.

  • spider7spider7 Posts: 11

    Mm, not sure where to start here.

    I bought a old house many years ago, my sumac was throwing up suckers in my neighbours newly tarmaced drive, not happy, I presume the roots were damaged in the preparation prior to tarmac.

    I left the tree as it was for some time before i took out the bay windows for replacement, I then found that the roots had penetrated both cavity walls and was still growing under the lounge floor, that was it, down it came and as you suggested I drilled holes in the stump and poured SBK into them, I then coverd the stump to stop rain diluting the SBK,  it protested for a while throwing up a few more suckers but eventallt died. 

    The individual suckers can be treated with Glyphosate which won't harm the tree but will kill them.

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