Lesser Celandine Questions

bob64(6)April 15, 2008

I took a flat shovel and scooped up some lesser celandine. It looks like I got almost all of the roots and bulbs. Do you think this will help in the eradication efforts or is this a waste of time? The other question is how to kill off the stuff I dug up?

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kwoods(Cold z7 Long Is)

My experience w/ the stuff would indicate that it is generally difficult to impossible to eradicate by digging. Miss one tiny bulbil and... oh well. When I do dig it up (more as a spiteful act rather than an attempt to eradicate) I put it in a hot sunny spot on a rock to roast for a few days in the hopes that its friends and relatives might take notice.

I spot spray w/ weed-b-gone max as early in the season as I can spot it and give it an additional spritz whenever the mood strikes me thereafter. I'm actually making good progress year over year but am comitted to the long haul. I do not like using chemicals at all but this stuff truly irks me. Additional hint... stems and undersides of the leaves are less waxy.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 10:50AM
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Thanks kwoods.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 5:42PM
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well_drained(z6a MA)

Lesser celandine is the bane of my existence. The first two springs after I planted my native garden I tried to pull it by hand, but every year it seemed to get worse. This year, there are carpets of it, wrapped around the bases of the other plants, smothering others out of existence (a wild geranium and two Hypoxis hirsuta have vanished beneath the Ranunculus - it's like a 1950s sci-fi movie!)

This year I got over my toxic chemical qualms and bought some Round-Up, but it didn't seem to do much good, and I couldn't spray in and around the other plants, which meant I couldn't spray most of the lesser celandine.

Is there any chance that, if I leave it alone, the lack of soil disturbance will tame it? I'm guessing no.

With the lesser celandine, star of bethlehem, burdock, dandelion and other weeds, my native gardening experience is often not an enjoyable one.

-- wd

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 3:44PM
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Leaving it alone will not work. It will continue to spread. Roundup does not appear to be the best choice for this one; recent reports are that triclopyr based herbicides work better.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 10:20PM
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butterflygal21797(z7 MD)

I accidentally invited this plant into my garden about 10 or 11 years ago. Got it from a woman who used to have a huge perennial garden and earned some income by selling off divisions of her plants. She didn't know the name of the plant. The following year, I did some research and learned how invasive it was. I immediately dug the clump and a few new seedlings that had sprung up. It took a few years of repeating the process, but I'm now at the point where I only see 1 or two little seedlings per year at the most. Some years I don't get any.

In my opinion, digging the plant up definitely helped, but perhaps that was because it hadn't become firmly established and spread that much yet. Now, if I could just find an effective way to get rid of the creeping charlie and mazus reptans that are trying to take over my yard . . .

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 6:25AM
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A little follow up. I ended spraying some with Roundup and those I sprayed look ill. It will be interesting to see if the sprayed ones bounce back or still manage to produce offspring. Next year I will have to hit it earlier. Those I shoveled are in a pile and it's not clear what they are doing.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 2:21PM
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kalmia10(z7 WA)

Glyphosate (RoundUp) in the early spring (March) at a 1.5% rate of solution has put some serious hurt on this plant. Same treatment done later (like now) still works, but not as effectively.

The plant reproduces mostly by tubers and numerous little bulbils in the soil. Be careful what you do with what you remove by hand. I dug up just a few remaining plants last year and sealed them up in a garbage bag to go out with my garbage. I had plants growing next to my garbage tote this spring. I must have dropped a bulbil...

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 2:53PM
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I don't think I can send much if any yard waste to the landfill. What do you think will kill off what I have dug up? Kwoods, do you think I should hit it with a weed whacker to get the waxy leaves off and then spray the stems?

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 4:18PM
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kwoods(Cold z7 Long Is)

The whacking might expedite it's retreat into dormancy. It will soon be going dormant anyway reserving it's strength for next spring. You want it actively growing when you spray it which is why earliest spring is the best time to start. Waxy leaves repel the spray so I just saturate the whole plant, stems and all. If you kick it while it's down with another drenching a week or so later it should die. You have to follow up because it will recover otherwise. Get ahead of it and then stay at it always thinking long term (next spring, and the next)..... it can be eradicated by spot spraying year over year but it is anything but easy.

I got a load of fill a few years back that was absolutely full of it. Down to a last few holdouts now.

Now I need to go follow my own advice with some bindweed that is getting ahead of me.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 10:16AM
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Thanks. Looks like this is another one that takes a long-term investment to get rid of.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 6:17PM
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growershower(Z7, MD)

@ kwoods: I have had lesser celandine in my back garden in the past. It is easily removed by digging it up. PLEASE do not use Round-up. You state that you're making progress year over year. I've made great progress in eradicating this plant by digging year after year. Each year there is much less to dig and I'm not poisoning the planet. If you're truly "committed to the long haul" you'll stop using poison.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2012 at 5:35PM
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