Six on Saturday: Wild and Weedy Part 2

Time ran away with me last Saturday because I failed to admit that I have a tendency to be quite relaxed about weeding, ie I don’t do it very often! In the more informal parts of the garden, like the woodland and woodland edge I just let them get on with it, removing them only if they get out of hand although I do try and deadhead dandelions before they set seed. Elsewhere, the borders are so stuffed that weeds are not always apparent during the main growing season and I tend to wait till the herbaceous plants die down before I have a blitz on anything unwanted. I do, however, particularly enjoy weeding the cutting beds when they are emptied of annuals and dahlias to leave them relatively pristine for the winter. And of course weeding the paths and paved areas is one of the few gardening tasks I delegate to the Golfer as open days approach!

Comments following last week’s post highlight the weeds we all seem to have and the particularly troublesome ones that most of us are very grateful NOT to have, like marestail (I really feel for you Anna and Sandra…). I also recall comments from another blogger many years ago, having spotted a small patch of lesser celandine in a photo of our woodland edge, wondering how I kept it under control. It’s not a very large patch and it occasionally pops up elsewhere, but I try not to let it flower or set seed; they sent me photos of their garden which was literally overrun with it…. on that scale I think I would have used weedkiller, something they were reluctant to do.

In my time there are plants I have introduced here and then subsequently removed because they have proved to be too vigorous or promiscuous – like bronze fennel, golden hop, variegated ground elder and no doubt many others. There are others that seed around but which I don’t mind, like the winter pansies/violas above, and Lychnis coronaria below. These seedlings will be teased out of the paving and potted up.

I am not sure if I introduced cowslips to the garden or whether they just appeared, but they are certainly rampant in the streamside grass where they are not doing any harm and look pretty with the spring bulbs growing there, but I daresay a degree of culling will be required at some time in the future.

I planted Erigeron karvinskianus some years ago but it has taken ages to establish; now however, it is beginning to pop up elsewhere which I am more than happy with it although I don’t think I want it to populate every single crack in the paving in the garden as it seems to do in some gardens I have visited !

I could say the same about grasses Anemanthele lessonia and annual Briza maxima, but in truth I would rather they were not quite so profligate; at least they are easy enough to pull out and a small number of the former can be potted up to sell at open days.

If I wasn’t already up to my allotted six for Jon the Propagator‘s weekly Six on Saturday meme I could also have included ivy, as I introduced a large number of named ivy plants, purchased from local supermarket Morrisons, around 20 years ago and some time later realised how quickly it establishes – hey ho, at least the spiky one I have sneaked in below is a little bit different!

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18 Responses to Six on Saturday: Wild and Weedy Part 2

  1. I like the Johnny Jump ups!

  2. I love violas. Lychnis coronaria is self-sowing: how wonderful. I love your ivy with such pointed leaves. There are beautiful weeds and if they do not get out of control it is worth having them, like your cones. Cathy, like you, I am also very left to remove weeds: you have the golfer to help you. Take good care of both of you. Have a good weekend. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

  3. Kris P says:

    Your weeds are prettier than ours, Cathy! Actually, Erigeron karvinskianus is a rampant weed here too. I generally let it have its way as it makes a nice filler, hacking it back only when it grows into clumps larger than a foot high.

  4. tonytomeo says:

    Fleabane is considered by some to be a native of California, although its natural range may not extend very far north of the Mexican Border. The common sort that used to be more common nurseries is known as ‘Santa Barbara Daisy’, but I suspect it got that name simply by being very popular in Santa Barabara, rather than by being native there. Anyway, whether native or not, it naturalizes. It works out well for us because it dies back by about now, so must be removed before it gets too overgrown to be a problem. It regenerates through late winter.

    • Cathy says:

      It dies back overwinter here too, although not completely

      • tonytomeo says:

        That is how ours works. I take the opportunity to cut it back to the ground, or pull it out from where it is unwanted. We leave quite a bit of it on stone walls. The walls look neat and clean without it, and then look nicely foliated for a while, but do not get overgrown.

  5. Heyjude says:

    I agree, Erigeron karvinskianus can be invasive. I need to pull a lot out this September as it has overrun some of my rather lovely wall plants!

  6. I share your philosophy. When you were describing the woodland and the woodland edge, I was nodding my head. I tend to be more “tidy” near the house, and progressively lax the further away from the house. I just did a little weeding this week…areas I’d been meaning to attend to since the beginning of the summer. 😉

    • Cathy says:

      One of my acquaintances who visited the garden said she could see how people enjoyed it but admitted the more informal approach just wouldn’t work for her!

  7. Cathy says:

    I suppose escaped flowers and grasses also count as weeds, which means my Stipa tenuissima is a weed! I don’t mind though as they grow so big and look a mess after two or three years and I can just replace them with a seedling. 😃 I remember a student begging me to dig out some of my ivy in the old garden for her. I warned her, but she wouldn’t listen. Would be interesting to know what it looks like now, 10 years later! 😆

  8. Anna says:

    Yes the marestail is an absolute nightmare Cathy and I have had experienced a double whammy as it was at the allotment too 😢 I first saw the plot in December when of course it didn’t show and there were no plot holders around to chat with. Big mistake! Our garden was previously uncultivated and damp so no surprise really when it appeared there probably in imported topsoil. Thanks for your sympathy. I always smile when I see erigeron karvinskianus for sale at plant fairs for over a fiver for one plant! Himself calls it a weed and it can be a nuisance at times but at least it doesn’t seem to disperse seed so that spreads all over the garden.

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