Some plants don’t die of natural causes. Sometimes they are murdered. Strangled, in fact, often by the people who planted them and care for them in the first place. Most gardeners don’t intend to strangle their plants, of course. In fact, it often happens as a result of trying to help the plant.
We wrap cords, cables and wires around plants that have been blown down or split apart in storms. We stake newly planted trees to support them as they get established. We put staples on our vines to help steady them as they climb to the tops of arbors. We put a plant in the ground and leave it tied to the stake that kept it upright in the pot when we bought it. And then we forget that we’ve done those things. The plant continues to grow and the cords, ties, wires or staples don’t move so eventually the plant dies. Some examples: