Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Invasive Plants


My response to this picture should be one of great joy. I bought this bush months ago for a great price at OSH (in fact I bought two). I knew exactly where I'd plant them, all I needed to do was build a couple small planter boxes. No problem right? Well if you're me projects are easy to think up and hard to get around to. Months later I'd repeatedly forgotten to water them and they were looking rather pathetic and snail bitten out on my front patio. By the time I put them in the ground they were half dead, but I still had hope. A week later maybe a quarter of the plant was left alive. I decided it was time to take serious measures. I chopped back both the plants to just their core and fertilized them heavily. MONTHS later, they are green and even starting to bloom again. I should be over joyed.

Why am I not you might ask? Well, look carefully at the center of this picture. That green stalk that is growing is NOT part of my bush. That my friends, is horsetail reed. This is yet another one of the plants I inherited from my home's previous owner and in case you haven't guessed it, its invasive. The bed of horsetail reed is about eight feet away from this bed, yet low and behold, it's found its way over to my bushes.

If you see horsetail reed and are considering buying it, don't let this post completely discourage you. It has a wonderful history of being used for scrubbing pots and such. If you're a pioneer it could be quite useful. It also looks quite lovely cut at different levels in a vase, and makes a delightful popping sound when you pull apart its sections. I will strongly caution you however, to put it in a pot. This is a good lesson for any invasive plants you might have your eye on, and this is not just limited to ornamentals. Plants such as mint and horse radish are a pain to get rid of once they find a home they like. Just a thought.

1 comment:

Helen said...

No! Not MINT! Anything but mint! Why?????