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I have seen these blooming all along Interstate 40 in the Eastern half of U.S. today (From Western Arkansas all the way to Greensboro NC. This picture was taken through the rainy windshield in Western North Carolina at the rest area/welcome center).

I'm referring to the larger purple blooming trees here, not the small dogwood in the foreground. Sorry for the lousy picture, but the weather wasn't great.

They have a strange sort of (I assume left over from last year) seed pod or nut cluster that sort of looks like a bunch of grapes hanging near each bloom cluster.

If I can find out what they are, I may plant a few of them on my property.

Anybody know what kind it is?

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It is wisteria. and yes it IS a vine. It will grow (and take over) ANYTHING it can grab onto. Years ago I stopped on the side of a small back road and pulled a couple shoots up from the ground and put them in my yard. The mistake was I didn't know then how invasive they were. I replanted them near some pine trees and within 2 years the pine trees looked like they had grape clusters growing in them.

Lots of people put them in their yard and keep them trimmed into a bush. When the flowers die out, it actually is a nice green bush.
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My parents have some wooded acreage in western South Carolina and this stuff was everywhere. Looked great when in bloom, but it had really taken a toll on many of the trees it had latched onto. Having to take down several Walnuts that would have otherwise been fine was disheartening. Even today there's far too many loose branches high up in many of the trees, a good wind usually makes for at long days worth of cleanup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So the ones in my picture and the ones seen along the road are more likely NOT wisteria "trees", but rather wisteria vines that have taken over some other kind of tree?
 
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