Wednesday, August 5, 2009


What is a weed?

It's supposed to be a nuisance plant. But I have some really beautiful weeds growing in my garden. Like Foxglove:
WEED FOR WEDNESDAY Some people may want to pull those babies out - but not me. I say, "Who is the genius that determines what's pretty and what's a pain?"

At least in my garden, that genius is going to be me. Now, I know foxglove can be dangerous. Some people consider it a poison but other people consider it a lifesaving medicine.

Of course you shouldn't plant foxglove, or Fairy Fingers wherever kids or pets might eat them because they will get sick. But, for me, I plant them in places where my pets can't get to them because I think they're pretty. Plus, I've never seen my dogs or cat even try to eat them. Maybe they're smarter than I give them credit.

Another "weed" I have in my yard is Amaranthus retroflexus.
Some people call it "pigweed" but it was cultivated by the Aztecs for culinary purposes and by Native Americans for it's grain. I think it's pretty.

So, is a weed just a plant that grows too easily? Why do we fight in our gardens to keep these plants out? I garden with the "cottage garden" mentality: If I like it, it stays. I don't care what people call the plants.

What do you think? Do you have any "wanted" weeds in your yard?


Jen on the Edge said...

I'd love to have all those foxgloves in my garden. My garden is new this year and I figure it will take me three years of annual seeding to get foxgloves established.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I planted foxgloves on purpose and they ALL DIED. GAH! I thought they were so lovely growing wild in Ireland. Apparently rhodedendrons are like a weed there, too. Another thing that won't grow well here.
For me, Queen Anne's Lace is a "weed" that I find lovely and let live. Ditto for goldenrod and dandelions (they have a short lifespan). Our pigweed is icky.

Jo said...

I had no idea foxgloves were a WEED! I love foxgloves! I suppose lupins are too, and I love those as well. My gardening motto is "controlled chaos!"

Rena said...

Those are pretty. I love dandilions though my husband can't stand them. Who hasn't plucked a dandilion and blown it away?

MG Higgins said...

I struggle with this! Some "weeds" are so darned pretty but then the seeds get into riparian areas and do damage to native plant habitat (which I live close to). So I try to be careful. In my front yard, violas are taking over! They're literally growing like weeds.