A Gardeners Daydream
In many ways the neighbors I will be telling you about are wonderful folks to live next door to but frankly when it comes to the issue of horticulture they make my life a tedious living he!!. Looking back twenty years when with broad grins they planted Russian Olive along the property line as screening (which was a freebie from another home owner), coveted bittersweet, transplanted Lonicera japonica aka japanese honeysuckle, were thrilled with the Sweet Autumn Clematis that "just showed up", and gave up trying to keep the poison ivy at bay after one attempt, I should have known I would become an ambidextrous weeder.
I wouldnÂt have thought any more of this horticultural annoyance had they not mentioned recently how much they love their native landscape "after all we donÂt have to spend nearly as much time or money working in the yard as you do and we never have to water our native plants". I quickly decided the best course of action would be to bite my tongue smile and run back home to weed.
Of course weeding allows for plenty of time to think and the one question that kept rolling around in my head was; is the contemporary trend of using native plants in the landscape actually doing more harm to native plant populations? This issue is solely one of newly developing areas, and where today every plant in the landscape is assumed to be native to the average homeowner who is lookingÂ no searching for a reason to leave their landscape untouched. I wonder what percentage of plants in the undeveloped New England landscape can within reason be considered native?
Now having complained about the neighbor who perpetuates invasive plants by assuming they are native plants, I have to ask myself who has bought and planted too many to count rare plants from foreign places that could easily turn on me and become the thugs of tomorrow. What property owner is more damaging to the struggling native plant population?
ps. what do you daydream about while you weed?