Journal archives for March 2014

March 08, 2014

Weeds of Santa Rosa.

Having spent several days recently as a volunteer clearing invasive species at a local nature preserve, it seemed politic to devote this fine spring morning to our own city lot. Before anything else, I am a married man with the correct priorities.

Like all our neighbors, we've a patch that disappears each spring under the new crop of volunteer growth. Some of this, providentially, is rather pretty; like the stands of Bermuda buttercup and Three-cornered leek. By the time our Redbud bursts into blossom, most of our flowerbeds are densely carpeted with alternating patches of hot yellow and masses of ivory bells hanging delicately from curving stalks. This is as nice a picture as any master gardener might contrive with infinite pains: and all gratis, for nothing.

But even as we admire this feast, one notices the concomitant inroads of ryegrass, spurge, bittercress, red deadnettle, dandelion, groundsell, Erodium, bur clover and bull mallow on my vegetable space. This year, with the late start, these are at least not fully confluent. More shaded areas are filling with the neighbors common ivy. with forget-me-nots, with chinese privet, cleavers, and the wonderfully named asparagus aspargoides. We also have--same neighbor--blackberry; but happily this is all Mr. Burbank's thornless variety: a wimpy cultivar that disgraces it's muscular tribe.

All this and more! And it means that it's time to get weeding, pretty buttercups be damned. For the latter entirely cover beds of exquisite succulents, delicate violets and many other charming nursery species: assembled at expense and assiduously cultivated. O the Pride of Man! The first spring is free and belongs to every beating heart; the gardeners' spring of May belongs to the Richards, and a few obsessives willing to devote themselves to the inflexible disciplines of a massive yearly attempt to gild the lily of spring. It's just my opinion, but I hold that these mighty efforts would better be expended on maintaining and extending our preserves.

Such are my grumblings as I man up to the business at hand… to tear out as much as possible. What follows is a partial list:

  1. Tons of ryegrass.
  2. Rapidly emerging and quickly flowering bittercress.
  3. Petty spurge.
  4. Burclover.
  5. Spiny sowthistle.
  6. Groundsell(Old Man of Spring).
  7. Bermuda Buttercup.
  8. Bullmallow.
  9. Erodium.
  10. Dandelion.
  11. Cut-leaf geranium.
  12. Red deadnettle.
  13. Forget-me not.
  14. Three-cornered leek.
  15. Italian arum.
  16. Spearmint.
  17. Common ivy.
  18. Chinese Privet. I remove 10,000 of these every year.
  19. Cleavers(stickywillie).
    20 Asparagus asparagoides.

These must be cleared repeated before the full flush of cultivated spring… they'll rebound quicky and prevail again; until being joined/suceeded by the weeds of high summer. That would be another post.

Posted on March 08, 2014 22:27 by icosahedron icosahedron | 16 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment