Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) and Fat Hen running riot)

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) and Fat Hen (Chenpodium album) running riot


Waging war against weeds is a determined pass time at the advent of Spring. This year is no different. As the soil warms up further after winter barely moved in (down South at least) the speedy winners in the race to get started with growth are heading for the flower and spread the seed about finale.

A weed as I have been told over and over is a plant in the wrong place, and I suppose to some extent I would agree with that but truth be told for some plants there is NO right place. Perennial weeds are clearly top of the hit list but really any weed that flowers might as well be perennial for they shed thousands of seeds per plant, PER PLANT. Sorry to shout but it’s the truth and sometime the truth hurts. ‘One year of seeds means 7 years of weeds’ my old college tutor drummed into us. He was not exaggerating. These days I follow the suppression route of the No-Digger‘s and put them all under a thick covering of mulch and cardboard and more mulch, any likely lad that pokes out of that is quickly scalped and composted (pre-flowering of course, flowering ones go to the council tip for extra heated composting)

Other not so popular front runners  are Speedwell (Veronica persica), Creeping buttercup (Ranunculus repens),  Cleavers also called Goose grass (Galium aparine), Fat hen (Chenopodium album), Dock (Rumex obtusifolius), Goundsel (Senecio vulgarise), Bindweed (Fallopia convolvulus),  Chickweed (Stellaria media), Hairy bittercress (Cardamine hirsute), Herb robert (Geranium robertianum), thistles of many kinds, Ribbed plantain (Plantago lanceolata),  Rosebay willow herb also called Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium), Dead nettle (Lamium purpureum), Scarlet Pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis) I could go on but these are the few we are lucky enough to have romping through our plots this month! You can find an even more extensive list at Garden Organic

Dandelion’s, my least favourite,  maybe be a popular early salad ingredient for our continental neighbours but in the UK? not so much. I have an instagram chum who advocates roasting roots and eating them. Meh. However River Cottage‘s Pam the Jam DID inspire me to pluck the gaudy yellow blooms for some Marmelion jam. 100 flowers is all I need. Now they’re a potential crop I shall be waiting with excitement for them to pop up their glossy heads.

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