Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Vine on vine

with 6 comments

Click for greater clarity, especially in the feathery strands of the Clematis.

Do you remember the tree-like mustang grape vine, Vitis mustangensis, that appeared in these pages in January? Even such a mighty thing necessarily began small, and that’s what you see in this photograph: the new and endearingly downy growth of a mustang grape vine on August 1 along the Brushy Creek Regional Trail in Cedar Park (during the same outing that brought you the recent photographs of dragonflies).

What’s curious here is the presence of a second kind of vine, Clematis drummondii, whose feathery strands you’ve seen in these pages on several occasions. When two species of vines meet, it’s natural to wonder which one will predominate. In this case the mustang grape seems to have gotten the upper hand, although not entirely.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 8, 2012 at 6:05 AM

6 Responses

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  1. It’s a lovely photo no matter which vine wins!


    September 8, 2012 at 4:10 PM

  2. What’s most amazing to me about these vines is the speed with which they grow. Some of them seem to be auditioning for a part in “Little Shop of Horrors”. And of course, as most southerners know, that impulse toward growth can be bane as well as blessing. Kudzu, anyone?


    September 9, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    • I first became acquainted with kudzu when I spent time in North Carolina, where it was common to see trees or buildings covered with the stuff. Most of the vines I’ve shown from central Texas don’t usually climb or crawl more than a few feet, but a few of them, like rattan, poison ivy, and Virginia creeper can climb way up into the top of a tall tree.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 9, 2012 at 7:49 PM

  3. […] in a small tree. The nest was supported by two kinds of vines: greenbrier, Smilax bona-nox, and mustang grape, Vitis mustangensis. Note also the spent pod of a milkweed vine, likely Matelea reticulata, in the […]

  4. […] landed on these dry leaves of what I think was a hackberry tree, Celtis spp. As a bonus, notice the mustang grape vine, Vitis mustangensis, that had come up and coiled a tendril twice around one of the […]

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