Less of the Celandine

IMG_1155After 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.

IMG_1157I 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!



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14 Responses to Less of the Celandine

  1. Pauline says:

    We have loads throughout the garden and I usually tackle one border at a time, but know , like you , that we will never eradicate them. I try to like them, but have failed so far!

    • Cathy says:

      Fortunately these are only in this one spot, so they are scarcely a problem – but better safe than sorry five or ten years down the line!

  2. I have a plague of celandine in the side border here, the rockery border. Happily we are flattening that border to store a boat, so I might manage to eradicate it, though I will have to be careful if I re-use the soil.

  3. rusty duck says:

    They are dreadful to remove from our claggy clay soil, impossible to get every bit out. I can only hope it’s less each time.

    • Cathy says:

      Ooh yes, not as easy with your soil – they really were a doddle to pick out here, even if I have to keep on top of it every year. This wet weather makes me realise again how lucky we are with our soil as it is not adversely affected at all.

  4. Christina says:

    I found one here last year, I have a sneaky feeling that a ‘friend’ actually gave me the plant and I stupidly didn’t realise what it was! You don’t want them suffocating the snow drops!

    • Cathy says:

      Certainly not! The cultivated ones have some redeeming qualities, I believe, and perhaps don’t spread quite as easily – what did you do with yours? 😉

      • Christina says:

        I pulled it out when I saw what it was, but I probably left some root so I expect I have it forever but with the drought in summer I don’t think it will take over.

  5. Annette says:

    We had lots of these in our Irish garden, not so many here. They look so beautiful en masse in the woods but I guess you’d not appreciate in your garden unless it was voted Chelsea plant of the year or something… 😉

  6. croftgarden says:

    Pretty plant, but best viewed over the garden wall.

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