Citizens requested Coalition help with kudzu on poles and guy wires along S. Converse St. near Ridgewood Ave. The photograph shows that vines begin to die on a guy wire after the vines are cut by Coalition volunteers. Note the Callahan Kudzu Guard in the right photo, bottom left. September 2005.
Kudzu on a chain link fence along S. Converse St. interfered with sidewalk access. The fence is along one boundary of the Mary H. Wright Greenway Park. Coalition and community volunteers got to work! October 2005.
By December 2005, kudzu is gone from guy wire and fence: Much better!
Here are more before and after photographs in the same fenced corner. Flags mark where kudzu root crowns were removed. Note the kudzu guard on the guy wire. September 2005.
The fence is mostly free of kudzu June 2006 (first photograph, note the kudzu-free pole at background right), including the fence keeping kids in the park and away from the street (second photograph), but some work remains (third photograph).
The Mary H. Wright Greenway Park offers a large area for play and relaxation. June 2006.
However, kudzu "nibbles at the edges". Some areas around the park fence is mowed during normal park maintenance, offering some control over kudzu infringement. June 2006.
Volunteers from the surrounding Cornerstone neighborhood help with fence work, and proudly display a sign identifying that the area is a kudzu control site. July 2006.
One advantage of working near water is the possibility of a fresh catch at the end of a hard day of work: Mmm ... cooter stew ... good eating folks say! August 2006.
Past work on the fence by community volunteers along the street, poles, and guy wires, prompted Cornerstone volunteers to partner with the Coalition to combat kudzu. August 2006.
A creek ravine crossing beneath S. Converse St. is infested with kudzu, as these photographs from June 2006 illustrate. This is adjacent to the park, a disconcerting view given the neat and tidy park. The challenge is to remove kudzu from the ravine, and any surrounding areas. June 2006.
Here is a before (left, July 2006) and after (right, August 2006) example of vines cut to kill kudzu in trees. Also note kudzu removed on the ground in front of the trees.
Clearing the ravine of kudzu was begun by hand. After several months of this manual labor, the recently discovered Coalition method of using a skid-steer loader seemed like a good idea! The skid loader, owned by a volunteer of the Coalition, was brought to bear in August 2006. All of the work at this site used the fork tool mounted on the front. Here the skid loader works at the bottom of the ravine.
It was possible to use the skid loader on relatively steep ground, fairly close to the edge of the ravine at the top of the embankment. Old stonework near the bridge holds soil in place. August 2006.
Coalition volunteer Paul David operates his skid loader, and here ponders how to deal with massive vines. The solution is to wrap chain around the vines, and pull them out with the skid loader. August 2006.
Until kudzu was cleared out of the bottom of the ravine, we did not realize that it hid a fine old stonework bridge, a granite waterway. The before (June 2006) and after (August 2006) photographs reveal why: They each show the same view of fence and ravine.
Further work using the skid loader, and manual labor by the Cornerstone Neighborhood Association plus the Coalition, cleared kudzu from the left bank. Earlier photographs show the left bank several feet deep in kudzu, which pours over and down the hidden retaining wall. November 2006.
Children of Conerstone community now see a bit of history during their play. If these stones could only talk . . . December 2006.
The first photograph shows that much progress was made removing kudzu from the south bank of the creek ravine. The second photograph shows David Lankford, Interim Director for the Spartanburg Public Works Department. David's team and the Coalition have worked together closely and effectively at several sites in the city. September 2007.