Can anybody help identify this plant

AnthonySMichJune 27, 2012

This weed/plant/tree??? has grown to over 6-7ft in 2 months. Can anybody help identify it. I've got three of them growing out of nowhere in different spots over 30 feet away from each other with one in the shade of a big oak tree, another in a section of brush and this one next to the house. Leaves are as big as my hand and the "flowers" look like they might turn into berries but not sure yet as they are still small.

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AnthonySMich

Here is the budding flowery part.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 1:26PM
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AnthonySMich

Here is the base of the same plant. The texture is waxy/rubbery almost very dense. Leaves are smooth. The stumps at the bottom are not part of it, it just grew next to them.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 1:28PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Pokeweed, (Phytolacca americana.) A native indeed but not well-behaved enough for most gardeners to keep it.

Hard to dig out the huge, long root but boiling water will kill it after you cut off the top part, should you choose to be rid of it.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 2:02PM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

It is herbaceous, meaning it dies down to the ground in winter so it won't grow bigger in following years than it already is. They are a cool looking plant if you have the right space for it.

FataMorgana

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 7:34PM
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ncrescue

I was told it was great food for birds flying south for the winter, so I leave one each year. Have to admit it overpowers the other things near it!

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 7:54PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Almost everyone who wants their plant ID'd likes it. Amazing the power of being told it's a weed. If you keep it and have kids, make sure to tell them not to play with the berries and definitely don't eat them.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2012 at 12:26AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

I don't have poke that grows at my place but I do have lots of Bittersweet Nightshade (Solanum dulcamara). I remove it from gardens, but I didn't go nuts (as many do) when my kids were tiny trying to nuke it and "protect them" from it. It provided a good teaching tool for berries that look edible but are not. I made sure they knew exactly what it looked like - just seeing it helped reinforce plant safety lessons. Poke can also provide that same learning and teaching experience.

FataMorgana

    Bookmark   June 28, 2012 at 10:24AM
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