I don’t know enough about all of it to know if we have Cherokee, or Chickasaw Rose. Both are voracious growers and climbers. Cherokee has three leaves while Chickasaw has from five to nine leaves per bracket.
Just to be difficult to identify, ours has seven.
I first saw “IT” years ago, while we were tending graves for All Saints Day in a graveyard near Chataignier. It was beginning to encroach the boundaries of the cemetery and it looked like someone was trying to cut it all down. I now know why. I have never seen any plant (aside from a cactus) have so very many stickers or thorns per branch. You have to accidentally back into it, to fully realize its impact.
It has been said that back in the “old days”, it was a back-breaking job to cut trees and cut the trunks into boards for house building, probably with a “passe-partout”. When it came to building fences, few would go through that process again, so many planted Cherokee instead. It’s a very fast, compact grower and it was only a matter of time before it was so-o thick that cattle couldn’t or wouldn’t try to push their way through it because of the thorns. And if left unattended, it can cover a very large area in a very short amount of time. Trust me.
Some have seen what they think is the pink variety of the flower, which would definitely be Cherokee. Regardless of the species, both are said to be Asiatic in origin and both escaped from cultivation. Cattle are said to eat the fruit of the plant and distribute seeds from droppings.
We planted a small cutting and in a short time, it had taken over the entire corner of the yard outback. Corner meaning an area about 20 X 30 feet.
We tried getting rid of it, but it won. One of its good points is that when birds disappear into it, few animals will try to follow. And I can’t imagine what brainless species would dare try to climb over it. There aren’t that many tweezers in the world!
Moral to the story: think wild.