After the enlightening moment yesterday of discovering just how many embryonic celandines there could be hidden in a small trowelful of snowdrops, I decided that I ought to nip the invasion in the bud and not give it the chance to get to the epic proportions experienced by my blogging friend Tim. To be fair, it was not yet a huge patch, spreading around the first three or four of the stepping stones through the woodland edge border. I had already started the annihilation before I took this picture – there is celandine just visible at the top of the picture and the clear soil in the foreground shows just how dense the growth was. All the well-known garden writers agree that it is nigh on impossible to eradicate them completely, but at least their progress has been thwarted.
I checked in my RHS Encyclopaedia of Garden Plants before beginning the task, but could see that these were not the cultivated forms of Lesser Celandine, Ranunculus ficaria, like ‘Floro Pleno’ and the teasingly named ‘Brazen Hussy’ but the common wild and wilful form. Common or cultivated, they all carry the same health warning – ‘may spread rapidly’! It took barely an hour to remove them to the best of my ability – but like the Terminator, they will be back, courtesy of the countless tiny new tubers they deviously produce!