Category Archives: weeds

Wonderful Weeds: TEASEL – A Striking and Spiky Wild Plant That Benefits Bees and Butterflies in Summer, then Seed-eating Birds During Autumn and Winter

Teasel Dipsacus fullonum Other names: brushes and combs; Venus’ basin. Life cycle: Biennial Only treat teasel as a ‘weed’ if it interferes with your gardening as it has many positive benefits. In late summer plants reach 1.2-1.5m (4-5ft) tall and are topped … Continue reading

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Wonderful Weeds: CHICKWEED – A Sign of a Rich and Fertile Garden Soil, This Prolific and Edible Wild Plant Can be Added to Your Salads All Year Round

Chickweed Stellaria media Other names: chickwittle, cluckenweed, mischievous Jack. Life cycle: Annual/ephemeral Dense green clumps of chickweed, up to 30cm (1ft) tall indicate rich, fertile soil, but it will grow virtually anywhere in the garden, including the cracks in paving. The … Continue reading

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Wonderful Weeds: BORAGE – A Prolific Self-seeding Plant Which Can Swamp its Neighbours, But is a Big Hit With Bees and Other Insects

Borage Borago officinalis Life cycle: annual/biennial Grown as a herb, this prolific self-seeder has escaped in many gardens and should be treated as a weed, except for any plants which you want to allow to develop and flower throughout the summer. … Continue reading

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Wonderful Weeds: DANDELION – Let Some Wet-a-Beds Bloom to Provide Vital Food for Bees and Insects in Early Spring

Dandelion Taraxacum officinale Other names: pee-a-bed, wet-a-bed, blow balls Life cycle: perennial Dandelion’s deep taproot must be dug or forked out and older plants, with very deep roots, may need several attempts. However, dandelion doesn’t spread sideways, so I let a few … Continue reading

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Wonderful Weeds: HOGWEED or COW PARSNIP – A Big, Tall Weed Whose Flowers Are a Magnet for Bees, Hoverflies and Other Beneficial Garden Insects

Hogweed Heracleum sphondylium Other names: cow parsnip, keck, limberscrimps Life cycle: biennial/perennial Often seen on roadsides, this tough, taprooted weed can be difficult to remove if it gets a foothold in beds or borders. Leafy rosettes of deeply lobed leaves … Continue reading

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My New Organic, Weedkiller-free Gardening Book Helps You Identify 60 Garden Weeds and Shows How Easy, Difficult or Urgent Dealing with Each One Is

  AT A TIME WHEN garden weedkillers such as glyphosate (Roundup) are under increasing scrutiny over their environmental safety (its residues are found regularly in our pee and in our bread), and as we learn that less tended, scruffy and … Continue reading

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Read The Foreword to The New & Updated Edition of My Book Weeds: An Organic, Earth-friendly Guide to Their Identification, Use and Control

WE LIVE IN A MEDIA-DRIVEN AGE in which we’re increasingly led to believe that fast is good, that hectic is to be applauded and that we ‘don’t have time’ for all those small things in life. Our gardening, too, has been … Continue reading

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WEEDS is Go! New and Updated, my Organic, Earth-friendly Book All About Chemical-free Garden and Allotment Weed Control is Available Now

Weeds: An Organic, Earth-friendly Guide to Their Identification, Use and Control from Earth-friendly Books, is now available in paperback direct from the author. At a time when garden weedkillers such as glyphosate are under increasing scrutiny (its residues are now … Continue reading

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Potting Up Dandelions

If you cultivate an enlightened attitude to wild plants instead of trying to constantly eradicate them, your garden can share in their success. By John Walker. Published on the Hartley Botanic website, 13th August 2014. Put ‘kill dandelions’ into a search … Continue reading

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