need help identifying a plant

enjoyJune 4, 2007

My sister moved in to a new house last fall. She had a large plant growing in a south facing border. She chopped it back assuming that it was a big annual. It had large elongated roundish leaves and drooping berries in a reddish-purple colour. The stalks are thick and sturdy. It is growing back this year by surprise and has grown 6 inches in 2 days. Any ideas?

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cindra(z5b Ont)

So many things come to mind it is really hard to say. If you could post a picture, that would help a lot. Sorry I can't be of much help without a photo to id.


    Bookmark   June 4, 2007 at 12:56PM
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Judy_B_ON(Ontario 5B)


Here is a link that might be useful: Pokeweed

    Bookmark   June 4, 2007 at 11:26PM
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Thanks, I'll ask her to send me a pic and I'll send her the pokeweed link and let you know.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 10:57AM
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Guess what!!! You are absolutely right, Judy b. My sister is shocked. She has a lot of gardening experience and had never even heard of pokeweed.
So, tell me, how did you know? I am assuming by the info in the link you sent that it isn't something that people WANT to have in a foundation border. Do you think it got there by accident and the previous owners didn't know what it was or did they actually PUT it there?
How does she get rid of it now? Any ideas? She thought she pulled it out last year and here it is. Do they re-seed or is there an extensive root system she will have to destroy?
Thank you very much for identifying it. What a huge help!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 7:44PM
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Judy_B_ON(Ontario 5B)

I'm a native plant nut and interested in plants used in traditional medicine. Pokeweed is a native plant that is at the northern edge of its range in southern Ontario. There aren't many other plants with reddish leaves and purple berries that grow inches in a day. Although poisonous when old, the young leaves have long been used as greens and as a spring tonic (song: Poke Salad Annie). Some people do grow it in their gardens; placement must take its size into account and, of course, don't eat the berries.

Your sister can pull it out before it sets berries and seeds and keep pulling up any new shoots. If it comes back next year, she could try Round Up.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 10:37PM
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Thanks so much. She has little kids and dogs so I think she will want rid of it. I'll pass along the info.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2007 at 12:29PM
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