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Is this a weed?

(25 Posts)
GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 12:15:43

These have been sprouting up all over the shop, and I really love the leaves, but they are mostly growing in the deserted, rubbish filled area down the bottom of the garden surrounded by nettles, so I have assumed weed. Before I rip them out of the ground, can I double check what it is? (Is it ever acceptable to purposefully grow a weed if it's pretty?!)

shovetheholly Wed 22-Mar-17 12:18:50

I could be wrong but I think that might be arum maculatum?? If I am right, it is technically a weed, but rather an attractive one! I grow a relative, arum italicum, ornamentally!

Enb76 Wed 22-Mar-17 12:19:12

Looks like a sort of Arum

JeNeSuisPasVotreMiel Wed 22-Mar-17 12:22:28

Yes it's an arum. The native kind. It will have red berries in the leaf spathe by April. They don't last long, and the whole thing will die down by summer, however they will spread where they are happy.

I've been digging them out in large amounts over the past few years because they are competing with the plants that I want.

SleepFreeZone Wed 22-Mar-17 12:22:44

I call it a weed in my garden as it pops up in places I don't want it. It does flower and is pretty easy to dig up but it sprouts from tiny little seeds that you just have to keep removing.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 22-Mar-17 12:24:55

Yy Shove. Also known as lords-and-ladies. In my book it is a wild flower - I have one or two but wish I had more.

GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 12:32:39

Will it just take over if I move it somewhere I can actually see it, then? I really like it!

BusterGonad Wed 22-Mar-17 12:34:13

I thought for a minute that you were asking if it is weed not a weed! 😂

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 22-Mar-17 12:34:51

I suppose that depends on how happy it is in the place you move it to. I can't believe it would be that rampant, though.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 22-Mar-17 12:36:50

Lol Buster, my mum once accused my brother of growing cannabis in her garden. Turned out it was normal hemp that had grown from the seeds dropped under her bird feeder.

GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 12:37:14

Buster grin

shovetheholly Wed 22-Mar-17 12:39:30

If you love it, why not try it, and keep an eye out. If it starts spreading like wildfire, then you can take early action to get rid of it. To be honest, there are very few plants that are so much of a problem that they can't be dealt with by a short sharp strike! grin

I have several weedy things I like. In particular, I'm actively trying to get a Linaria purpurea to spread in my front garden. Corydalis lutea pops up all over the place too, and I let that flower if it's in a nice spot as well. I also have some celandines under my apple tree which look lovely this time of year, though I really have to attack them hard to keep them exactly where I want them. Germander speedwell is another thing I struggle to root up when it's in flower.

BusterGonad Wed 22-Mar-17 12:41:20

I was sorely disappointed! 😂

GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 12:47:35

I'll give it a go then I think. There's one small one popped up in a bed close to the house, and surely that would have overgrown like crazy along with everything else that was there while it had the chance!

shovetheholly Wed 22-Mar-17 12:53:03

With any weed, they're mostly built to out-compete other things in the right environment, so you will probably have to pull out seedlings from your borders where they aren't wanted. But Arums aren't hard to root up, and it's a small price to pay if you like them.

They are from a family called the Araceae, or (for those of us like me that baulk at so many vowels all at once), the Aroids - they share these peculiar flowers which often have a large, eye-catching bract around them (the spadix). I am growing another kind of Aroid, Arisaema from seed at the moment - they are wonderful, exotic-looking things and I am VERY impatient for my first flowers (probably at least a year to wait, though!)

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 22-Mar-17 12:57:34

I think there's something magical about them.

choccyp1g Wed 22-Mar-17 13:06:07

They are very poisonous.

bookbook Wed 22-Mar-17 16:11:57

Its very invasive in mine - cuckoo pint/lords and ladies. I dig it out as much as I can as the red berries are poisonous, and they look lovely - so not happy when I have DGS with me 'helping'

GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 16:17:57

Would they be okay in a child-free garden? We have animals, but none that are remotely interested in plants...

bookbook Wed 22-Mar-17 19:31:00

I have no idea - they warn against it for dogs , but I'm not sure how bad it is - sorry!

Ferguson Wed 22-Mar-17 20:11:25

OP - you CAN try moving it, but they like damp, dark areas - usually under hedges - so may not enjoy being out in an open border. They have white tubers, which need to be dug out if it's not to keep coming back.

An entertaining relative is 'mouse tail plant' - arisarum proboscidium - which we have large areas of, and it is an amusing novelty for children:

www.bethchatto.co.uk/a-b/arisarum/arisarum-proboscideum.htm

www.burncoose.co.uk/site/plants.cfm?pl_id=326

dorsetperennials.co.uk/product/arisarum-proboscideum-mouse-tail-plant/

GinAndOnIt Wed 22-Mar-17 20:42:39

Ah yes, they are under trees at the moment! There are some further up, but they've been discovered as I've been removing large planting - so again, in the dark!

sunnyhills Wed 22-Mar-17 22:28:30

My friend has this in her garden .I think it's an attractive plant but it seems very invasive .

greeeen Wed 22-Mar-17 22:37:31

These are very invasive and hard to get rid of as they have corns or tubours that break up and shoot again when you try and dig them out. So I would be careful about letting them get too established, unless you're not worried about them spreading and out competing other plants.

GinAndOnIt Thu 23-Mar-17 05:19:46

Hmm. I think I might keep them down the bottom for now, maybe with the view that will become more of a woodland area once we've cleared the rubbish. With the trees and ferns that are already down there. Maybe I shall get a hosta or something to satisfy my needs for attractive leaves towards the house!

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