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Urban forester saves huge tree from 'suffocating' plant: 'You could really see just how badly it was choking the tree'

Nature is amazing, scary, and beautiful all at once.

Nature is amazing, scary, and beautiful all at once.

Photo Credit: TikTok

Nature is amazing, scary, and beautiful all at once. Let Andrew the Arborist explain.

As he shows in his viral Tiktok video, Andrew the Arborist (@andrew_the_arborist) saves a Spruce tree "being suffocated out" by a non-native, invasive vine species that has wrapped around and grown into the tree itself.

"What [this vine] will do is ... start at the base and will quickly climb up a tree ... and ultimately, over time, over many years, the tree will eventually die," he explains in the video.

@andrew_the_arborist #Invasive species, like this #bittersweet vine, can be damaging to our trees and forests! #plants #nature #invasive #fyp #trees #plantnative ♬ original sound - Andrew The Arborist

The culprit in this case is the Oriental Bittersweet, a species of vine native to Eastern Asia and has been growing within the U.S. since the mid-1800s. Invasive species, which historically have been introduced by humans, are a major cause of biodiversity loss, and robust biodiversity is essential to maintaining life on our planet. Invasive species are dangerous because they will hoard water and nutrients from native plants.

The video shows Andrew the Arborist cutting the vine at its base so the rest of the leaves dry out. He returns to the tree nearly two weeks later to see the vine's leaves have turned brown.

"The tree will get a lot more sunlight and be a lot happier," he says.

If you're looking for ways to better the environment and save a few bucks, switching to a native-plant lawn to rewild your lawn is a great option.

Unlike a traditional lawn, native plants don't require as much water, fertilizer, or pesticides to maintain, lowering costs, water usage — grass needs between 1 to 2 inches a week — and harmful chemicals. Buffalograss is a great alternative because it is drought-resistant and requires as little as 12 inches of water per year.

Even a partial lawn replacement can allow homeowners to reap these benefits.

If you live in some states like Pennsylvania, good news. The state government will pay you to replace your grass lawn with native plants.

One commenter on this TikTok commended the change that was visible within a couple of weeks: "Wow once the leaves started to die you could really see just how badly it was choking the tree."

Other commenters mentioned the fact that not everyone notices invasive plants. 

One wrote: "Invasives are all around us and a lot of people don't realize it. They think it's part of the normal landscape." Andrew replied, saying: "For sure! A lot of folks think all green is good, but that's not the case. Hopefully this helps a few realize that there are harmful, invasive plants!"

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