Driving in the country recently, I looked out my car window and saw this (click to see better):
It's kudzu, a dirty word in the South, and a plant that's become an out-of-control pest. Notice how it has enveloped the trees.
Kudzu was introduced to the U.S. from Japan in 1876. Originally, it was thought to be a good method to prevent erosion. Unfortunately, once kudzu gets started, it's hard to control, proving once again that it's not nice to fool with Mother Nature.
Kudzu does more than sprawl over trees. Below you can see a utility pole that is being taken over:
Below is another utility pole/electrical wire that has kudzu on it.
Here's a close-up:
You can read what wikipedia says about kudzu here.
Kudzu was a comic strip created in 1981 by Doug Marlette about the rural South. You can read about it, if you click here. Marlette was killed in a car wreck (in Marshall County, Mississippi) in 2007, and the strip is no longer in syndication.