Tatarian honeysuckle Lonicera tatarica
IDENTIFICATION — Birds eat and spread the seeds of this 10-ft.-tall-and-wide shrub. It grows into dense thickets that can force out other plants you want to keep. You can spot this pest easily in early spring because it’s one of the first shrubs to leaf out. The fragrant pink or white spring flowers are really quite pretty. Eventually they fade to yellow, and orange-red fruit sets on in summer.
FAVORITE CONDITIONS — Tatarian honeysuckle grows in any spot with full sun to part shade and fertile, well-drained soil, but it tolerates almost any soil conditions except very dry areas.
CONTROL — When the plant is a seedling, pull or dig it out of the ground. If it’s too large for this, spray the plant with a nonselective herbicide, such as Roundup® Poison Ivy & Tough Brush Killer Plus in spring or late summer. Or cut down the tree and dribble or brush on a systemic stump killer around the edges where the sap is flowing. It’s absorbed into the wood and kills the roots. Be careful — it can kill any plant it gets on.