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perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Posted by Lucy925 z5 NY (My Page) on
Sun, Oct 12, 03 at 13:39

I'm trying to clean out my flower beds for winter, but am having quite a time (yesterday sweating in the sun) getting rid of the cameleon that is trying to take over my gardening world. This plant has underground runners and doesn't like to give up, that and lemon mint smell nice but I would recommend staying away from-very invasive.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Lobelia syphilitica alba that I started with a couple of plants from seed. They are everywhere now, even remote spots, and the flowers would be nice if they all came out at once, but they pop out only a few at a time, leaving dried and ugly ones behind. Don't have time to deadhead all of them.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by dian57 M-H Valley NY-5 (My Page) on
    Mon, Oct 13, 03 at 8:21

I've been picking Lamb's Ear out of my lawn for years. This year the whole drift is outtahere. Soon to follow will be those shasta daisies that fall all over.


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Trumpet Vine !!!! It's as bad as mint..maybe worse. I happen to love the orange blossums and so do the hummingbirds, but this travels underground and is sprouting all over the place.

As much as I love flowering vines, a lot of them are so invasive !!


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Chinese Lanterns are extremely invasive.
Dian, I cut back my normally floppy Shastas this year in the spring - slightly delayed bloom, and no flop.


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The worst perennial I inherited here is Bishop's (Gout) Weed. I pull out as much as I can, but I am sure it will win.For every one you yank, 5 more appear lol

I never mulch my Lamb's Ear. Enough of it gets killed off, so it does not get out of control.

I just planted Obedient Plant. Is it very invasive?

Flowerpower


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I just can't say I regret planting any, with maybe one exception.. that was MY mistake, my INEXPERIENCE: "tiger lilies".. I still love them, but I made the mistake of planting them in my "small" perennial bed when I first really started gardening-4 years ago. They are invasive, and, as someone said.. it takes a lot of MUSCLES to pull them up--which I did last year, but I did not get them all as I keep finding one here and there.. It is all a question of the right spot.

I also have "bishop's weed" (along with sweeet woodruff and lamium and a few others), but under my maple tree, where nothing much grows.. For the time being, it has stayed under control! The leaves, however, get pretty bad by mid-summer (leaf spots), even though I give them a serious 'haircut'. Anyone else with this problem? Any solution??

FlowerPower, I also planted some obedient plant (although I know it is invasive).. so I'll be interested in the answers you will get!

Over my 4 years of gardening, I have learned it is important to find the right spot for those "thugs"... Unfortunately, when you have a SMALL garden, you are very limited! My 'bee balm' maybe next on my list..

Anne-Marie


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My obedient plant isn't invasive at all. As a matter of fact, last winter several of the plants must have died. I only have a few left this year.

I also forgot about Virginia Creeper. That is the worst thing in my garden. I've been pulling it out for years. We didn't plant it and unfortunately it was well established when we moved in. It will climb up into the tree canopy and my trees are tall. I have to get after it every spring. I think it's winning the battle. Plus it doesn't get the gorgeous color in the fall that everyone mentions. Nasty stuff.


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I do know obedient plant can be invasive, but as Anne-Marie said, you just need to put it in a location where it can't take over. I love the plant and they are not difficult to pull out if they get out of control. Just chose your location wisely.

I don't think I have any plants I've regretted planting. In fact, I find I like a lot of plants that most people don't like and dislike a lot of the more popular plants. The only plant I would never ever plant in my garden is Bishops Weed (also known as Snow-on-the-Mountain). My mom had it and it is everywhere at her house so I have grown to hate it!! But like anything else, I have seen it places where it is under control and looks nice. Careful site selection, I guess!

Tara


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  • Posted by rouan z5 New York (My Page) on
    Tue, Oct 14, 03 at 17:55

Pachysandra is my bain at the moment. It came with the house and garden. It's terribly invasive and has overrun several of the garden beds. It was planted all around the house, around several of the trees and along the borders of our property. Where it comes into contact with the vinca that was also planted in borders, it has taken over. It's going to take several years for me to clean it out. I don't intend to get rid of all of it, but I refuse to have it everywhere!


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Yeah i agree on the trumpet vine...didn't realize how envasive it was planted it two years ago and no blooms and it's under the siding along the foundation etc. dug it out and now have to deal with the runners...and where i dug it up it's back!!!!!


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Thanks for the info on Obedient Plant. This year I bought a Tiger Lily bulb (?). It never bloomed this summer. Now I thought I had to dig it and store for the winter. Yes? No?

FlowerPower


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Count me in on Pachysandra! Spent 2 days digging up one 4 ft by 2 ft bed this spring. Had about 5 wheelbarrows of roots to dispose of. It grows into the lawn and takes over all the beds no matter how much mulch. Some of mine have 1 1/2 ft of mulch. (It was free several years back). Roots last FOREVER!!!


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Eeek. Everything you all have mentioned is in my garden! (With other things, of course.) I just planted a trumpet vine. What if I put a barrier in the ground around it? I'm thinking of containing my chameleon vine I just moved with something - maybe strips made out of the million plastic pots I accumulate over time. But I'll have to seal them together somehow, or do a lot of overlapping. Might slow it down, though.

I agree on the Bishop's weed. It behaves only on the north side of our house, hemmed in by the foundation and the lawn we mow, and in shade most of the time.


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  • Posted by mikee2 5 Scotia, NY (My Page) on
    Wed, Oct 15, 03 at 20:51

I have had the invasive obedient in my yard for years. It isn't much trouble at all for me. It edges a couple of my beds and if it begins to grow close to the lawn, a quick yank solves the problem. I always collect the seeds from it every fall so they don't scatter themselves around. (I collect seeds from just about everything). The rose campion is hard to control b/c it produces an enormous amount of seed. It has a nice bloom period so I keep it around.

My pach isn't spreading fast enough for my taste. It's in a dry, shady and very neglected location. I rarely water there. I also have inherited gout weed from a local exchange. I planted it before doing research to find what it was. It is soooo pretty! I'm keeping an eye on it - it has crawled a little bit in it's shade bed but still under control.

Ann Marie are your tiger lilies the wild daylilies? They are tough to get out. The roots tend to break and the little bulbets sprout back up. You really have to keep after the area to get rid of them all. I love them in my yard. They are on the back of a border where spreading isnt an issue. What WAS an issue was planting them next to our asphalt driveway. Those babies starting popping up in the middle of the driveway! I always find trouble lol!

Flower power I dont have Tiger lily but my other lilium bulbs stay in the ground over winter.


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I got it at the Co-Op Ext plant sale. The foliage looks like an Iris, but there is no actual bulb or corm. The roots are white and are not "bulbous" like a daylily.

Mikee, thanks for info on the Obedient plant. I am glad to hear it is easy to yank.I also try to collect a good amt of seeds. I like to see what kind of flowers I get when I save from hybrids. You should have seen my Sweet William- it had 3 diff color flowers on 1 plant. Looked cool though.

FlowerPower


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Demaris, You mentioned putting a barrier around your trumpet vine. Were you talking about sinking a barrier into the ground, or just putting some kind of edging around it? The reason I ask, is that the underground vining can reach far beneath the surface of the soil, unlike mint where you can easily rip up the parts that stray.

I LOVE trumpet vine, but it has been a real terror in my garden. I have vines surfacing many feet away from the actual planting. I planted it against an 8' tall wood stockade fence. I thought it would look pretty draped over the fence ( and it does!) But it has spread into my lawn, and also into the lawn of my next door neighbor. I am busy trying to control it...but it maybe a lost cause. :-(


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ummmm..... fammsimm: your member page says you're in Texas. Is your Trumpet Vine growing out-of-control in Texas, or upstate NY??? 'cause we all know "Texas is a whole 'nother country"!


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The worst plant I've ever planted is a geranium oxonianum. It seeds iself everywhere. The lawn is full of it. I've been pulling it out for years and it just comes back in different places. If I don't find it in time it chokes out the other perennials it's near.

Hedy


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Re: a trumpet vine barrier - I was going to try sinking something into the ground. I was thinking of somehow using the plastic pots of which I have a lifetime supply. If that doesn't work, I'm not sure what else, but my husband is a collector of er, "raw materials" and I know he will come up with something, as well as the brute force to dig it in!


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Audrey: As a born and raised Central NY'er, I can attest to the fact that Texas is a whole 'nother country. :-) lol

(Don't even get me started about fire ants, consecutive 100 degree days, tornados etc.)

I may have a bigger problem with trumpet vine because of the longer growing season here, but irregardless, trumpet vine is very invasive, and I wish I had been forewarned ( or had done more research) before I planted it.

To make matters even worse, the same fence that I planted trumpet vine against has bamboo coming through from my next door neighbor's yard on the other side!!! Bamboo ( the non-clumping variety) is his big gardening mistake. He spent some time chopping,pulling the bamboo last weekend, in fact. The bamboo is several feet into my yard, as well as attempting to take over his garden. He battles bamboo, and I battle trumpet vine. ACK !!!


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I have what is called perennial sunflower or Jerusalem artichoke. It grows to 15'tall and is pretty because not much else blooms when it does but I weed it our spring and fall and it always comes back.

Here is a link that might be useful: Our pond and gardens


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I've seen the trumpet vine go crazy at my mom's too...and I've got more Pachysandra than I can stand...Hopefully I can give it all away!

I heard in a lecture the other night of someone using ribbon grass as a ground cover...I know that spreads like crazy but since the area is enclosed by my walkway, I am thinking of trying it...any thoughts?

P.S. Mikee2...I've got a ton of pachysandra if you want some...and I saved some clematis seeds just for you! Your other plants are still at my mom's..but I have spots planned for them!


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Garden frog, ribbon grass as a groundcover, especially if it's enclosed, sounds like a good idea to me. I've never found it be overly invasive, just needing a lot of room to spread.

A perennial I wouldn't recommend is the herb type Comfrey, unless you want it in that spot forever! A friend gave me some so I stuck it in an empty vegetable bed, until I could decide where to plant it. What a mistake! After I transplanted it, the original spot was filled with zillions of new Comfrey plants. It's been years since it was in that spot but, I STILL have to weed out new Comfrey plants yearly.


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Don't plant ribbon grass! Please! Ribbon grass is very invasive. Planted it around the mailbox and next thing you knew was it was growing across the front lawn. If it is in a partial sun area or shady area, it doesn't grow as fast, but it still spreads.


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I am calling it quits with scabiosa butterfly blue and pink mist--they are nice bloomers, but the plants hardly ever make it through the winter, I'm doing good if they last for two years. Does anyone else have the same experience? I can't see spending money on any more of these plants.


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Woodyswife, I have the same trouble with my 'Butterfly Blue' scabiosa - it looks nice for a year or two, then it's toast. I'm going to find something else to plant in that spot this year.

As for invasives, my headache plant is stachys byzantina - from three little plants 6 years ago, I have since pulled out ARMLOADS of the stuff. Every year I yank up 3/4 of it, and by the end of the summer it's as rampant as ever. I love the look and feel of it, and the way it attracts bees and butterflies, but every year I dig up huge amounts of it to keep it in its place in my perennial beds. It's definitely a thug.

Laurelin


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Thank you all for the pleasure of humor and laughter at the expense of your difficult plants. It's nice to know there are so many colorful and humbled gardeners in our Upstate neighborhood.

cheers


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Trumpet vine can take anywhere from 3 to 7 years to bloom if it hasn't bloomed before. I have been growing a tiny one that I rooted frin a stem cutting since last summer. It will be at least another 5 yrs. I am sure before it blooms and since it is so tiny I can keep it in a container for most of that time. Garden Frog is also going to try and get me a cutting from her mom's plant. I know I am crazy but since I garden mainly for humnmers and butterflies this is a must have. If it gets too invasive I will just move and let the vine have the house! LOL!
Penny


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When I lived in the mild weather of California I found these to be invasive: Japanese anemone, colored yarrow, Mexican evening primrose. Gaura self seeded everywhere. I'm afraid to try them here, but perhaps the cold keeps them under control. Any feedback from people here in Zone 5?


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'Gottagarden',
Here is an answer for the plants I grow:
Gaura: will not reseed
Yarrow: YES... YES!! but seedlings are easy to pull up
Mexican evening primrose: YES.. YES! Not because it reseeds but because it spreads by runners. Easy to pull up, though.
Good luck,
Anne-Marie


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Lysimachia clethroides and L. punctata. There is another one with beautiful dark wine foliage and yellow flowers that pops up everywhere. I don't have that name right now but for some reason 'Alexander'rings a bell.It is rather easy to remove. I have tried planting the L. clethroides in a plastic pot and sinking it. That has worked pretty good for the past two winters. We will see how they did this year.


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(forgive if this is a repeat, thought I posted but can't find it) I haven't really met a plant I didn't like and would never recommend - it's just that the placement is wrong on some of them. Of course, some might say that certain plants should be placed on a deserted island 1000 miles from civilization, but...!!! My problem children are:

* Oenothera fruticosa - sundrops - evening primrose family, blooms during day, lovely yellow flowers and reddish foliage. DON'T PLANT IT IN A BED! It's very nice, however, on a border of woods, fills in and keeps brush back, replaces grass.
* Feverfew - lovely chamomile-like flowers - wants to take over the world, easily removed, I let it go if it shows up in an empty spot, for a year or so, till I have something better to put there. It's travelled as much as 300' from the original plant.
* Ribbon grass - beautiful variegation, pink spring coloration, again DON'T PUT IT IN A BED, you'll never get it out and it will take over. Would be lovely somewhere it can spread to fill an area - very difficult to pull out.

Here is a link that might be useful: Home page, with garden pics and links


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Ridgetop, I *completely* agree about the Oenothera!!! My friend gave me some and within 2 months it was running *EVERYWHERE*! I ripped every *bit* of that sucker out and swore I'd never plant it again... and it's the *only* plant I've ever completely ripped out of my gardens, despite having several "runners".

PS: I checked some of your garden pics, and just *LOVE* that purple iris with the darker purple flags! awesome! :) [If you will be offering any of that at your plant swap, *PLEASE* put my name on it! :]

Audrey.


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oops... that should have said "darker purple falls" (sepals), not 'flags'. It's ok though... I refer to "dart flights" as 'flags' too! :)


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Penny-come and dig my trumpet vine out and you can have it lol


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Is Mexican evening primrose available here? I loved it in California and have 3/4 acre to fill. Anything to make less mowing!!

CJ


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Yes it is.. Dug up mine not too long ago.. ;o(
Anne-Marie


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Husky,
I think I am cornering the market on Trumpet vines so I will have to pass on yours. I know how invasive they are but I still love them. A friend in Alabama sent me two Trumpet vines last week. She thought she was sending me alabama Crimson Trumpet Honeysuckle but as soon as I saw the leaves I new it was a Trumpet Vine and it is the wild kind too! The are now in large nursery containers against the 20ft. hedge bordering my neighbor's yard. I put them in containers large enough to let them stay there for a couple of years and not have to worry about them. I am actually thinking about planting one out by the street next to the telephone pole! One think I have learned is if you want them, plant them as far away from your house as you can get them.

Penny


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MINT. I got this wonderful smelling choc. mint, and a tiny spermint. I had them in sunken pots, they grew out of them, I moved them around until I found a spot I thought I would be able to just let them take over, but as all gardeners do, I changed my mind and bought some new plants for that spot. What a pain in the butt it was getting that mint out! And I still have it sprouting up! I think I will be pulling that for years!

Also creeping thyme. It looked awful the next spring and is very hard to clean up.

And ornamental strawberries too! I guess I have a made a few mistakes!!


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Michele486: What happened with the creeping thyme? I was going to plant some bewtween some stepping stones. Is that not such a good idea??? - Ellen


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well it could be the varity I got. It looked awful in the spring, all tall and deed, and it seemed the new growth was on the ends. I ended up pulling it out. If I can find the tag I'll let you know the excat one I have. I think it is still out there in the garden.


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  • Posted by hammerl z5-6 Amherst NY (My Page) on
    Tue, Jun 1, 04 at 15:37

Anemone Canadensis. Still pulling it out after three years. It's the plant from hell. Anyone got a good way to get rid of it? It's in a bed with bearded iris, a great collection of columbine black barlow, some coral bells, a couple perennial geranium, and two roses. Mulch hasn't helped.

Mint. The last owner of my house had planted it, I've been pulling it out for five years now. I admit there's less of it now, but that's as far as I'll go. And that's after plonking the a/c condenser on a concrete slab over most of it.

I won't touch ajuga or chameleon plant. Mountain Bluet and Snow-on-the-mountain won't enter my yard, either.

Oh, and let's not forget comfrey. A friend bought a house, and there were lots of perennials. I dug a bunch out as he was getting rid of them all to make a kidproof backyard. Comfrey came with. My god, practically overnight they turned into five foot plus tall plants with hairy leaves the size of an elephant's ear. It still comes up, and it scares the living daylights out of me whenever I see it. I swear, I must have ideal conditions for comfrey. I have never seen a plant grow so fast or big. And the roots must go down several feet, if not clear to China.

I put the obedient plant next to the neighbor's massive willow tree whose taproot is in my yard, and it's slowed the march dramatically. The trumpet vine is starting to get a little vigorous in the shade by the back fence, which is starting to alarm me. Maybe it'll strangle the comfrey.


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I have such big areas that I just rotate the invasive plants to a better site for them to invade! LOL! I have bee balm in a nice corner that was originally the site of poison ivy and bittersweet. One of the trees had to be cut but my DH never did anything but cut it off with a 4 1/2 ft. stump. I put a birdhouse on the stump and bee balm all around it with one side my lilies and the other astilbe and in the foreground violets run amok. It looks nice for an area I really don't want to touch (as even roots of poison ivey send me into a swelling!). We had another area that nothing but prickers seemed to grow so I put my mint and rambling pink rose (that has too many suckers). It really is nice and lush! Def. not plants you want in the small beds! Blanket flowers can run amok too if you let them all head and seed. I like them as a wildflower look and they bloom all summer in my hot clay dirt that I haven't yet touched with compost or added fill. I also plant sunflowers with them for an interesting look.

But the top of the invasive list here is Bittersweet. Whomever planted it on the old farm down the road.....well....its spread to over 50 + acres! It is terrible. Only good for making free xmas wreaths! Worse than trumpet vine too! Don't plant it!!!


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Balloonflower...can't get rid of it.
I was not happy with my Golden Oregano and Lamb's Ear,which took over my garden in one season and got thrown out last year!!


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Hi! Wow... reading everyone's replies has me glad that I've put some serious thought into creating a "natural" part of my lawn specifically for spreaders -- such as yarrow, bee balm and mint. I hate mowing that area because it's all uneven and even if they spread there, it's no where near my "formal" flower islands! I have my garden specifically to attract birds, hummingbirds and butterflies, and they absolutely loved the bee balm last year. So I don't want to deprive them (or me) of the pleasure they (& I) take in watching them flit around in it!

As I'm re-working my beds, I started thinking about how fast they spread in my old bed. I'm reworking 3 "formal" beds in total: 1 bed I just completed ~yippeee~ on Monday morning!! I built a retaining wall with 2 rows of pavers, put in great topsoil, and Nutrabrew compost, and re-planted my original plants (plus lots from the Scotia exchange!!!!); 2 beds to still re-do!! I'm starting the second bed tonight...

KAREEN: was the perennial sunflower in the red detergent bucket that I got at the Scotia exchange from you??? I was going to put them in a different part of the yard -- which I also don't want to mow -- and if it spreads as quickly as you say, I might have to re-think where to plant it. Please let me know if this is the invasive you mentioned above, okay?

Yours in gardening,

adkmountaingirl
Wilton, NY


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  • Posted by LNMP z5 NY (My Page) on
    Wed, Jun 2, 04 at 14:04

Speaking of yarrow, I made sure that I planted the yarrow I got from the Scotia plant exchange with a root barrier (bottomless pot) so it wouldn't take over the garden!

Anyone want some purple spiderwort? It came to my garden uninvited, and while I like it, it just keeps exploding!


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LNMP,
Yarrow also spreads by SEEDS, so the bottomless pot will be a great 'protection', but you will also have to deadhead or pull up volunteers in the spring. 2 years ago, I did NOT deadhead because I liked the look of the seedpods and my flower bed was a carpet of yarrow seedlings the following spring! Last year, I made sure I cut the flowers to make dried bouquets just before they faded. I still had a few seedlings this spring-easy to pull, though. But butterflies loves them!

Anne-Marie


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orange oriental poppies! I am so tired of pulling them up from everywhere. I agree that sundrops were also a mistake in the bed. My obedient plant doesn't seem to be a problem, and I'm keeping an eye on the knautia, because I've heard that can also be a problem.


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Dark-leaved cow parsley (anthriscus sylvestris 'Ravenswing'). I can't believe I paid real money for this plant. It is just a purple leaved form of the stuff that infests the ditches and roadsides and cross breeds with them to produce a zillion new plants with foliage that ranges from green to purple. I finally eradicated the dark-leaved lysimachia and am still struggling with trumpet vine and Virginia creeper. Invasive but still with me is a lavender flowered violet. It was given me by an old friend who is no longer with us so I'll keep it even though I have to keep digging up pieces of it and throwing it away.


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RE: Tigerlilies...Ohhhhh

"it takes a lot of MUSCLES to pull them up"
No wonder my sister-in-law said her husband could use the backhoe to uproot the bed so we could sort them and move them! I take it she's dealt with them before...I listen to her and wait for the backhoe...lol!


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Houttuyinia will take over and so will aegopodium (bishop's weed.) Keep pulling them out as you see them and they will be gone in 3 years. This takes vigilance!

I love the knautia seedlings. They are east to pull if you don't want them. I put them between perennials which hold them up.


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My Anemone plant!!! Planted it about 7 years ago and it never grew. THEN! two years ago it showed itself and now I can't get RID of it!! I've got runners all over my front garden that take the power of God to pull out.

I also have Sweet Woodruff but it's much more easy to handle so I don't mind it as much.

Then there's the mint. I planted it in a container in the ground because I was told it was invasive. Didn't do a bit of good. The stuffs all over! But at least, like the Woodruff, it's easy to pull and smells nice. :)


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This topic was too valuable to let age off the forum.

I was wondering about anemone and lysimachia, so I'm glad to hear that YES they are crazy spreaders.

What about that rampant spreader, artemisia? It really takes over.

I've planted bronze fennel, and while lovely when young, it sets a million seeds. Also verbena bonariensis sets lots of seed. But I like both of them and the seedlings are easy to pull, but be prepared for LOTS of them.

I was going to try to plant anemone and lysimachia in large (15") and deep (10 inch) pots to see if they can be contained that way. Any comments?

Also, this year I planted a bunch of the spreaders together to let them fight it out in a separate bed. Yarrow, bee balm, rose campion, turtlehead, purple coneflower, obedient plant, etc. All dark pink spreaders. Will be interesting to see how they compete with each other.


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hammerl, you can save me your Anemone Canadensis if you are coming to the swap at Tara's. (if not just come visit and I will send you home with lots of trades). It is native and I have plenty of room for it to trollop around in, as well as tons of other natives for competition.

I have the property from hell. Well parts of it anyhow-shaded shrub swamp. I have a variety of microclimates and plan my planting accordingly. Slow spreading natives go in their own area, which is the choice pine woods, moist well drained. Spring flowerers go in the deciduous dryer parts. Wet loving natives get the wet meadows, and those ADHD wackos get areas where nothing else wants to grow, so I sing "Born Free" and let them romp to their hearts content.

I am glad I am not the only one to ever kill False Dragonhead. Mine did not come back last spring either. I changed it to an "island" that is mowed around with more sun. Tall New York Asters and Goldenrod grow whevever they can, so it is hard for any other plant to get very far (except of course, the evil Darth Purple Loostrife).

I have annual gardens, an herb garden (part of which is just a general shade garden, as it is surrounded by arborviti and pine trees and the house on one side), and then "the wilds". I plant domestic plants in the gardens surrounding the house and for the most part stick to natives in "the wilds". The natives can romp all they want as far as I am concerned. I am from an invasive species so it is not my place to argue with them about what they can do on THEIR own land. I plant my mints in (the herb garden) large containers so they don't get out of hand. The same goes for wild roses and the trumpet vine (that I got from one of you at the last trade!) I plant domestic wackos like sweet woodruff and lamium and other ground covers all together and let them duke it out. (the sweet woodruff won the battle against the bee balm is anyone cares to know). I cannot say what it will look like in ten years, but they surround a cement "stepping stone" path and the effect is really cool, like a patchwork. Most herbs are really European "weeds" and wildflowers. They (olden days Europeans people) used what was there for pot greens, medicine and seasoning. Because of this I would say the bulk of them (herbs) are badly behaved. I plant them all together and refuse to worry about it. I like the charming overgrown cottage garden look, and if I don't I will claim to anyhow so I don't have to weed. I appreciate well groomed gardens but they arent me. It would make my house look even messier in comparison, and trust me, the house looks chaotic enough without help. I am also "anti-lawn" except for I do like some nice clover and dandelion spots to graze guinea pigs on. Grass is welcome to grow in my dandelion clover beds.

I do feel kind of tricked by seed companies that advertise european flowers as "wildflowers" sold here in the states. Dames Rocket is one. I have seen and been teed off at others that I have seen this year, but can't think of what offhand. When I was newer I didnt know what was native and what was not and relied on the companies to tell me. Bad plan, but I know many will be similiarly misled this year. Now I research everything I plant.

My one really funny mishap was Nasturtium. It is not true that it doesnt like fertile soil. I planted it between my mint containers expecting little cute plants, and they grew into enourmous monsters, each with several tentacles eight feet long or more. I put long branches into the ground and they grew up them, looking like huge flowering trees. They were just covered with large bright blooms. I let them go and twined them around everything. Next year I will grow only one, way away from everything all by itself. Luckily they are annuals, but I am sure they reseeded all over. Anyone want one of the babies? lol.

Here is a page with my herb garden and the monster nasturtiums.

PAX
Laurette

PAX
Laurette

Here is a link that might be useful: Herb Garden


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I will bring anemone canadensis to the swap, then, with a note to others that it can be quite invasive and difficult to remove. Of course, I'll still have plenty. I haven't been able to remove it yet. :)It's pretty (which is why I let it get a foot hold in the first place), and a native, but it digs in and camps out forever.

Another native I've got (think it's native)is Marsh Marigold (caltha plaustris, cowslip). It came along for the ride with some daylilies and other assorted plants from a friend's yard. early blooming, cheery in the spring. I've left it alone. Not overly invasive. Supposed to like it wet. Well, wet I've got.

I let lamb's ear, bee balm, and rose campion battle it out in a plot between the house and walkways a few years ago. Lamb's ear won, but the others held on. They're now in bottomless pots (well, not the rose campion, I just snip the spent bloom before it sets seed if I don't want it back).

And black-eyed susan ate a pretty dark red mum, and is being evicted this spring.

Sweet Woodruff? It's spreading in my yard thanks to the dog (if you took home my sweet woodruff at the WNY swap last year, it's part of the healthy clumps my dog planted while hunting voles... I intentionally planted it under the lilac, where it makes a great ground cover, but the seed pods stick to her fur like velcro). It needs the right area, and no dogs rooting around.

Comfrey still rates as the plant I'd never invite back. Much too large and deep-rooted.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

The New England Wild Flower Society calls the Anemone Canadensis "rambunctious", lol. I would love some marsh marigold also if you have enough to give some out.

Can you believe I cannot grow black eyed susans either? They used to fill the back meadows, until the evil lawnmower man mowed them too many years in a row. I replanted in abundance and not one came back the second year. It was two very wet years in a row but its hard to believe not one survived, and no seeds self sowed (there were many many plants put in which flowered in abundance the year they were planted). Last fall I collected some seeds from a definately wild plant. Hopefully it will take to the meadows.

Oops, I'd better shut up or no one will give me plants at all.

I have baby Rose of Sharon bushes in abundance but mostly because I never have the heart to pull them. They breed like mice, but the snakes won't touch them. Whenever I walk past them I think "hmmmm, does "My love is like the Lilies of the Valley and the Rose of Sharon.." mean invasive and impossible to control?

*SNORK!*

Anyone have Blood Root?

PAX
Laurette

Here is a link that might be useful: love's unrelenting resolve


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Lysimachia spreads outward from the plant in all directions. If you leave even a bit of root it will come back. After 3 years, I'm still pulling it out in places, and I only started with 3 tiny seedlings which I pulled out the second year. Yikes. Stay away from this in a cultivated garden.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Orange Ditch Daylillies (the ones found along the highways).
I planted some along the front foundation about 8 years ago..and they spread, and spread some more. I have dug the runners up, and planted them along the ditch in the front yard, and everywhere else I can think of.
They do look pretty when in bloom, and help hide the foundation....but they do spread quickly.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Phystogeia (sp?) - a/k/a "obedient plant" --- not! Makes massive clumps and hard to thin or rip out.

English ivy -- a scourge, I tell you.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Number one on my list would be "Oriental Limelight Artemesia". Beautiful plant when small, but it will swallow your whole garden! I had no idea how invasive it would be. I've been chopping it out for three years now. Tall as me, and thich tap roots that spread out forever!


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Strawberries and Cream grass - Last year I planted a tiny slip of this. In looking at my gardens this week, I see that tiny slip has turned into a solid 3 foot patch. I'm moving it ASAP before it takes over.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

This is an old thread that is coming in very hand for me. My worst nightmare. Lily Of The Valley. My mother pulled it out on the property and I'm still pulling it out. LOL


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by hammerl z5-6 Amherst NY (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 14, 05 at 9:31

BronwynC - interestingly enough, I'm the only person I know of who can't get it to grow. I planted some in my moist shady back bed, home to primrose, hosta, jack-in-the-pulpit, trillium, foamflower, forget-me-not and some other shade-loving plants. I think I get maybe two shoots of it, and this year I don't see any of it. I planted a pink variety on the other end of the yard, in slightly drier shade, near some coral bells, obedient plant, globeflower, a spirea, and the climbing rose zephirine drouhin. It never made it.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Hammerl,

Head down to Hamburg, you can have as much of it as my hubby can dig out for you!


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Torch lily - I've tried unsuccessfully to grow this tropical looking perennial and although it is supposed to be able to over winter in zone 5 I've tried 3 times now and have not had one come up the following year. I give up on the Torch lily.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by Aurore Zone 4/5 NY (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 9, 05 at 11:25

I think seed invasives are the worst, followed by underground runner invasives and then thick rooted clumping plants.

Seed invasives such as heliopsis and feverfew, etc. can have their seeds spread far and wide and in a year's time can be everywhere. Solution- cut flowers off before they go to seed.

Root invasives such as lily of the valley, perilla, lysimachia punctata and chinese lanterns, etc. grow by long underground runners. I planted chinese lanterns in one spot and the next year it came up six feet away from where I planted it. Solution- most of these plants pull up easily, but the roots remain to send up more shoots so you have be sure to spade up the roots as well and these roots aren't easy to dig. Planting them where they will get mowed down if they go beyond the borders helps keep them in check. Diligently pulling them at the first sign of growth so that there is no foliage above ground can weaken them so that they eventually die. This may take a few years.

Thick rooted clumping plants like hosta, heliopsis and some bushes, have large fiberous roots that are a bear to get apart and in order to divide often have to be lifted out of the ground in a large clump that weighs a ton. Solution- Don't let them get too big or hire someone else to do it.
Plants like star of bethlehem and ajuga, etc. form clumps of plants that no matter how hard you try to get rid of by pulling always seem to come back because you can never quite get them all. Solution- smother them.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by Matt_V Z5 central NY (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 9, 05 at 19:33

Greetings! In my Camillus Garden, the number one pain in the 'end is GLOBE THISTLE (Echinops). I have several hundred Taplow Blue seedlings to deal with each year...SO prolific are the seeds!!! If the darn thing didn't look so awesome, and attract Hummingbirds for great photos, I would have forgotten about it long ago.

One other nasty invasive is the Box Elder (Acer negundo) tree. Again, great Wildlife tree, lots of seeds for forage and thick foliage for nests. But if 50, 000 seeds fall, 49, 999 will germinate!! I pull so many each year, I feel like a crop picking lad from the 1800's. If you could eat them???


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

on hostas, i just cut partway into the plant (rootmound). i was going to dig the whole thing up to lift/seperate, but couldn't get the bloody thing up. i was however, able to cut out sections of the root mound, all of which have been transplanted successfully. the best times to cut into the hosta are in early spring or late fall to not interfere with blooming when there's minimal foilage so you can see what you're digging into! ;)


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Wow! I am so glad that the morning glories I had last year didn't return and the lily of the valley I planted last year either never "took". I'm also glad I didn't plant the feverfew someone gave me (didn't float my boat anyway) or the seeds to the money plant. I do have to do something with those disobedient plants though. Have 4 of them. Maybe I'll put them in Time Out. :0) Phyl


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Lily of the Valley


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I gotta laugh. I can read the frustration that i myself get every year. Now i know I'm not the only one who goes crazy.

Here's my PITA's (pain in the ...):
bee balm
any other mint family plant
lilies- day, of valley, you name it
king solomon, I think thats the name- huge plants that look like LOTV
and CHAMOMILE

I had started with 2 3" pots of bee balm, well now I have 2 3 foot wide bushes in a years time. Chamomile was a 3" pot, not a 3 foot wide and spreading shoot off. They jumped everywhere. Mint, well we all know it should be a weed.

I dug up and divided this huge clump of daylilies, the common orange. this lump was 3 feet wide and at least 2 feet deep! I broke it up and figured they were pretty so I would use them between the houses on the one side. It worked. I hate mowing there and yet i still do but soon it should fill in and eventually take over the world.

Isn't funny how the plants you really want to grow, don't!?

anyone got a helpful tip to kill off the creeping charlie from the neighbors yard?
:)


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I wish I did have a remedy for killing my neighbor's creeping charlie as the one plays it ends up in in my flower bed along the fence. I have lemon mint growing in my yard right now and I have never planted it. It just appeared in to big new clumps this spring. I have to dig it up before it starts spreading. I have been ripping out Marshall's Delite bee balm for two years. and I am still finding sprigs popping up. I do have and will keep my jacob's cline bee balm for my hummers. I just cut out a chunk in spring and move it to another spot.

Penny


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Just reading the old posts, and thought I'd second the perennials already mentioned: Lilies of the Valley (over the years, they've taken control of several beds),Oenothera, Evening Primrose (I dig tons of it out every year), also, Yuccas (once they are there, you'd better love em). I know Cleomes are an annual, but they reseed every year and I yank out all but a few. I planted some vinca as ground cover a few years ago, and it's also become a problem. Right now, though, I'm battling the weeds that have taken over, after several weeks of rain.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Yes Cleome sure does reseed. I have about 200 plants in a 3' by 2' area. So far I have left them to grow. Anyone know what will happen if I let them all grow??? I had one last year and it was gigantic 4' tall 3' wide. I think I should thin it out.

Ok here's what I did for creeping charlie my results are good so far!

Creeping Charlie Control - Borax
You may have heard about using Borax to control creeping charlie. You have to use Borax very carefully. Boron, the active ingredient in Borax, is an essential nutrient, needed in minute quantities for healthy plant growth. Amounts even slightly over what is needed are toxic to plants. Borax can be used against creeping charlie because the weed is more sensitive to boron than grass is. Small amounts can kill creeping charlie without permanently harming the lawn. (Grass may brown a bit, but it will grow out of it.)

The problem is, boron does not dissipate or break down like standard weed-killers. If it's applied repeatedly or at too strong a rate, you will end up with an area where you can't grow anything until the boron leaches out. That may take years.

The most you should treat your lawn with borax is once each spring for two years. Here's the formula:

Dissolve eight ounces of Twenty Mule Team Borax into four ounces of warm water, then dilute it in 2 1/2 gallons of water. This should be sprayed evenly over 1,000 square feet of lawn, no more, no less.

If you decide to use this procedure I would recommend you follow this formula precisely!


Wayne


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I guess I'll add my 2 cents here. I got you all beat. That horrid MONARDA I bought just grew and grew everywhere. I dug and trashed and repeated that for years. I wish I never got it. But I think those DITCH Lilies are even worse.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by hammerl z5-6 Amherst NY (My Page) on
    Mon, Aug 14, 06 at 12:55

Nah, I'll take monarda over that anenome canadensis any day. I've got three varieties of monarda (a nice red, a dwarf pink, and a tall magenta) that are all OK. I've got one invasive anenome canadensis that I haven't succeeded in pulling out over the last five or six years. Ugh.

And I've got to significantly thin the ditch lilies next spring (it would take a backhoe right now...) but at least they don't go crazy all at once.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

okay, all this information is overwhelming! but VERY interesting! Of course, I have every one of the mentioned ones in my garden, but the obediant behaves for me and like you say, pulls out easily and I've almost killed off the evening primrose by yanking that so many years.
I still love my bee balm and day lillies and the pachysandra and ribbon grass are still small enough to not be bothering me yet,
so the only one I really hate is the lily of the valley, and of course chives are everywhere!
but I need to know if some of the names are what I think they are: is chameleon the same as houytonia? and are japanese anenomnes the same as the canadensis?
I will need to start yanking those too, I guess.
wow, I'm beginning to wonder what IS safe to plant


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

This forum has helped me realize that the plants people bring to plant swaps are ... things they want to get rid of.

I went to a community plant sale today and was shocked to see plenty of things I would be happy to weed out of my garden, including the scourge of our town, lily of the valley. and here was my local GARDEN CLUB, trying to sell it to me for $2 a pot!

My personal bane, though, is not a plant but a tree -- locust. We cut two of them down a few years ago and can easily pull up 20-30 shoots every few days from the tree's roots, which traverse the entire back yard. Argh.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Any kind of clumping ornamental grass. The neighbor behind me has it here and there on his property and I have been digging it out of one of my beds along the fence since very early spring. SOme of it has actually grown through the wooden fence panels. I am tempted to go on the other side of my fence and poor round-up on all of it.

Penny


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

How funny! I've been reading through this thread and have planted quite a few of the things mentioned here on purpose. I'm trying to make my front flower bed all perennials and "care free."

My front flower bed goes from being full sun to mostly shade. So far I have planted Monarda (just planted a few weeks ago), Sweet William (not sure if that one was mentioned. My Mom hates it,)Double Flowered Tiger Lilies, Hens & Chicks, Bishop Weed, Rudbeckia, Enchinacea, Lilies of the Valley, Hosta and Astilbes.

I do have mint growing in my veggie garden that I can not eradicate. My mother-in-law gave me the plant.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Booberry I dug up buckets full of Lily of the valley last year for someone who wanted it. I had plant 6 tiny sprigs of it about 6 years ago and by last year it had taken over one side of my fencbe and was filling in another side. I still had to dig out about a dozen more this spring that had bits and pieces left in the soil. DOn't even mention echinacea. I had three plants that I started from seed three years ago. I have about 10 good sized plants now and hundeds of seedlings....They are all coming out if it ever warms up and dries out so I can get out there and dig.

I will stick with my nice well behaved southwerstern salvias. They don't spread but they do reseed some thank goodness.

Penny


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

  • Posted by hammerl z5-6 Amherst NY (My Page) on
    Tue, May 20, 08 at 15:08

Well, I still only have four or five sprigs of lily of the valley, no matter how hard I have tried to get a little to grow, or where.

On the other hand, I literally worked until my hands were bloody and blistered last weekend, ripping out bishop's weed and anenome canadensis by the bucketful.

Next weekend's project? Sweet Woodruff. I know people who can't get this stuff to grow. My dog plants it by hunting the flower beds for voles and having the seed stick to her fur and it falls off in the beds. Even though the beds were mulched heavily last year, I have two new patches of sweet woodruff clear across the patio from where I want it. At least it beats the other stuff.

I think my sisters-in-law will take most of it off my hands, so maybe I will try to save it.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

The ones that I have had to deal with at this house are Lily of the Valley in my front garden (don't mind it my back on the hill) and the STUPID chinese lanterns. I have spent a few days now out front digging out all thier stupid roots, even into my lawn to get this spot ready for more roses. I can't believe how quickly those things spread. I even told a co-worker I was not going to give them my pulled stuff because of how bad it got in my yard.

Something that is not a pretty perennial, but has some how made it into my yard is Knot Weed(heart bamboo). Both my hubby and I have admitted defeat and just try to contain it now. I think next year we are gonna just tarp them and the surrounding area for a few years and see what that does.

Melissa


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I pull out tons of knotweed between my garage and my neighbor's hedges. This year I have seedlings all over my beds because he lets everything just grow on his property. I have also had to content with his ornamental grasses coming through my fence and have been dousing them with weed killer. I might eventually kill the mother plants off....hope springs eternal!

Penny


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Excuse me if this is a stupid question - but can't you eradicate anything you don't want with Round-up? I know it may take several applications (it did with poison ivy on our property), but it should work eventually and is easier than pulling out roots or seedlings one by one.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I only use pesticides as a last resort as my garden is geared towards wildlife in particular hummingbirds and I also have a dog. I don't want to take any chances. I have resorted to spraying my neighbor's invasive grasses behind my fence and will probably have to do the same with the Knotweed along the garage.

Penny


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

The only things I have found invasive in my dense soil is the bishops weed, and despite that I recently planted the variegated kind anyway, and my Bamboo, which I love and want more of, once I figure out a good way to contain it (I hear 18 inch deep barrier of 40 mil plastic should work) . For some reason stuff that is considered invasive barely spreads - and even if it did, I have lots of acreage to fill up. I learned some interesting lessons about what is invasive to others at this years WNY plant swap and will try to do better with what I bring next year. This thread is also very helpful.

So if anyone has that anemone, and any red monarda - please bring it next year to the plant swap for me :o)

-Rosalinda


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

FYI, roundup doesn't kill knotweed. We have tried for 2 years now, and I have looked it up. That stuff is very hard to get rid of. We hate to use chemicals, our yard is natural. I think most people revert to chemicals too often and maybe that's why we are seeing our honeybees dying out?

I think though for my knotweed problem, I may be calling TruGreen. A co-worker of mine has a really bad knotweed problem and for $50.00, they have guarenteed with 1 application to rid her of it. As much as I hate chemical's, I don't want my patch of knotweed to get any bigger.

Melissa


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

I am not in upstate New York, but in zone 6 downstate Illinois. I was using the search feature for something completely different when I saw how many people had responded to this old post and knew it would be a treasure trove. Many of the things listed are things I have heard about before, but I had never created a list. Just prayed I'd remember what not to get or what to be careful with at planting time.

Thought someone else might like this in list form. I still plan to go back through and add the latin botanical name where missing. There are a few things that I didn't put on this list. Ornamental grass, for instance, since the type wasn't mentioned and there are huge differences depending on the species.
So, here's the list I came up with. Thank you for helping me to create the beginnings of a good reference file.

Aggressive / Invasive plants -- The following list began with plants that gardeners in zone 5 and 6 on the Upstate New York gardening forum found to be invasive. Some noted that “invasive” is somewhat objective and depends on where the plant is located. In the book Paradise Lot the authors sometimes put aggressive plants that they liked to have around on purpose in an area of the garden not ideal for that plant. I.e. in shade rather than sun. At some point I should perhaps mark the plants below with a rating system to distinguish the “never, never, never plant this” from the ones that might be good to use in certain situations.

Achillea millefolium ssp. Yarrow
Aegopodium Bishop’s weed aka gout Weed; aka snow-on-the-mountain
Ajuga ��" Someone in New York doesn’t like it. Ours is a good ground cover.
Anemone Canadensis
anthriscus sylvestris 'Ravenswing' dark leaf form of common cow parsley
Artemisia I get the feeling some types are okay.
Artemisia ‘Oriental Limelight’ Beautiful when small; will swallow your whole garden! Very invasive. Years to eradicate. Huge. Roots run vigorously. Tap root deep.
Balloon flower
Bittersweet (I think this is also called Virginia creeper.)
chameleon plant
Chinese lanterns
Cleome Annual. Prolific self-seeder. Might be good if the self-seeding is desired.
Comfrey Apparently huge, fast growing and deep rooted.
Lily of the valley Many, many warnings, although some would like to grow it and can’t.
Creeping Charlie
Echinacea purpurea purple cone flower Several mentions. I like it and like the self-seeding.
Echinops GLOBE THISTLE Prolific self-seeder, But…awesome looking and attracts humming birds.
Feverfew
Fennel, bronze ��" Self seeds vigorously; person commenting liked this trait.
Hemerocallis common ditch daylily
geranium oxonianum
Ipomoea morning glory
Jerusalem artichoke, perennial sunflower
Lamium ssp.
Tiger lily
Lobelia syphilitica
Lychnis coronaria Rose Campion (See- Lychnis The Genus for types that might not be invasive.)
Lysimachia clethroides Many, many warnings.
Lysimachia punctata Loosestrife Many, many warnings.
Lemon balm
Mentha ssp. Mint
Mexican evening primrose
Monarda bee balm
Money plant
Mountain bluet
Oenothera fruticosa - sundrops - evening primrose
Pachysandra
Obedient plant
Ribbon grass
stachys byzantina Lamb’s ears
Sweet woodruff
Thymus ��" the creeping thyme variety.
Trumpet vine
verbena bonariensis Self seeds vigorously; person commenting liked this trait.
Vinca
Virginia creeper
Yucca has spines. Dramatic structural plant. Very very deep rooted.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

It's funny - some plants that are on the above list I LOVE in my garden and others, two come to mind, Oriental Bittersweet and Virginia Creeper, I wish would die and never ever ever come back!!!....EVER!...at my house anyway :-)


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

"My front flower bed goes from being full sun to mostly shade. So far I have planted Monarda (just planted a few weeks ago), Sweet William (not sure if that one was mentioned. My Mom hates it,)Double Flowered Tiger Lilies, Hens & Chicks, Bishop Weed, Rudbeckia, Enchinacea, Lilies of the Valley, Hosta and Astilbes. "

Well, 5 years later....

I'm still fight mint and oregano that's gone wild in the vegetable garden. The monarda I moved to a sunnier but wetter spot. It's still there but not spreading wildly like I hoped it would. The Sweet William died. I think it's a short lived perennial to begin with (only lasting 2-3 years). Tiger lilies are tiger lilies! That's why you plant them. I think they'd survive a nuclear war! I love them just the same! The hens & chicks and bishops weed both died. I think I'm the only person that desperately wants bishops weed and has successfully killed it everytime (I've tried growing it from seed and from plants). Rudbeckia, Enchinacea, Lilies of the Valley, Hosta and Astilbes are doing well. I had to move the astibles but their doing much better in their new location.

HATE knotweed! The only ways I found to kill it without using Round-up, is to cut down to the ground just before we have a frost or before we have a long (week long) dry sunny spell. Also you can rip it out by the roots, but you need to bag it up. It reroots readily.

I'm allergic to Virginia creeper. Unfortunately, we have it growing up the trees around the perimeter of our yard.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

The biennial Rudbekia Triloba. While my favorite variety of black-eyed-susan, had completely taken over the garden of my last house. Before I moved I had a huge barn sale. Everyone who admired the plant I handed a small perennial shovel, a cardboard box, and told them to help themselves. The buyers had my beds cleaned out of this pernicious weed in no time. LOL! Everyone who saw the plant loved it but I did make a point to warn them not to let it go to seed. That was my problem. I let it go to seed because the birds, in particular the Finches, loved it. But they're the ones who spread it all over the garden. I now have one small clump which I don't allow to go to seed. I never have to replant the seed because in spite of cutting it down to the ground, I still find it in different locations throughout the garden. So each spring I simply transplant it in a place I intend in the garden. Feverfew also does this in my garden but not to such a degree. Now weeds are an entirely different subject. Ugh!


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

English Ivy. The previous owner planted it, now it berries, and so it pops up everywhere. Star of Bethlehem. Who knows how old I'll be when I finally get rid of it. Ground Ivy. Jewelweed. This one I actually planted. (I brought a few seeds home after a walk in damp woods.) The seeds seem to be able to stay dormant for years, germinating when conditions are right. I have Pokeberry, and yes, you have to hoe the seedlings down every spring, but the mockingbirds love the berries, so I let one live. If you have a formal garden, Penstemon digitalis reseeds readily, so you'll either have to move them to where you want them, or toss them into the compost. All my asters, ironweed, and jumpseed are surrounded by seedlings every spring, so they need to be hoed down.


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

The north side of my house gets very little sun, plus the soil there is poor. Several years ago I planted ajuga, which did well and didn't spread too aggressively. About 5 years ago, I added chameleon plant because I just liked the color. I figured I'd deal with the aggresivness when it became a problem.
WELL, two years ago that flower bed suddenly sprouted ferns (there are a lot in our woods) and wild strawberries (likely carried in by the birds). Both have taken over and completely choked out the ajuga and chameleon! I'm shocked!


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RE: perennials you wouldn't recommend!

Lilies are spreaders. I container grow most of mine plus have some of the tiger lilies growing in the ground near a pine tree, behind my container growing herbs and veggies, next to and around a wagon wheel. They need to be weeded out because they are multipling like crazy. Have other lower growing Lilies in the front containers and the Breck's 8 foot Tree Liies in the back pots.Total of 6 containers for same. Sorry the photo is verticle instead of horizontal. Took it mid last month and haven't straightened the photos out yet in PhotoShop... The Tree Lilies grow from scratch each year and grow to the 8 foot tall height and are really loaded with flowers galore. Just love them. I have tomato cages around them for support because they really get top heavy with their multi blooms to keep them from blocking my walkway in my alloted gardening area in a senior citizens complex. I MiracleGrow them with plant food too.


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