By Nancy Gift
Is weed? this question, requested via someone who has ever gardened or mowed a garden, doesn't have a simple resolution. in spite of everything, a weed, as suburban mom weed scientist Nancy present reminds readers, is just a plant misplaced. In A Weed through the other identify, present bargains a private, unapologetic protection of clovers, dandelions, plantains, and extra, chronicling her adventure with those "enemy" crops season via season. instead of falling prey to pressures to accomplish the right garden and backyard, reward elucidates the various purposes to embody an unconventional, weedy backyard. She celebrates the spots of wildness that crop up in numerous corners of suburbia, redeeming many a plant's acceptance by way of expounding on its confident characteristics. She contains recipes for dandelion wine and garlic mustard pesto in addition to sketches that express the usual fantastic thing about flora reminiscent of the morning glory, categorized via the USDA as an invasive and noxious weed. even supposing she is an suggest of weeds, present admits that a few vegetation do require eradication-she fortunately digs out multiflora rose and lodges to chemical conflict on poison ivy. yet she additionally demonstrates that weeds usually hold a message for us concerning the land and our remedy of it, if we're keen to pay attention.
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Extra info for A Weed by Any Other Name: The Virtues of a Messy Lawn, or Learning to Love the Plants We Don't Plant
Jessica Walliser, an organic gardener known in Pittsburgh for her Sunday morning radio show with Doug Oster, explains in her book Good Bug, Bad Bug: Who’s Who, What They Do, and How to Manage Them Organically, that many of these beneficial insects in our gardens rely on small weedy flowers as a food source for their nectar and pollen. One of the reasons that garlic mustard can legitimately be viewed as an inferior weed—worth pulling—is that the garlic flavor makes it unpalatable to the cabbage white caterpillars that feast on all other members of the mustard clan.
One particularly lovely area was a thick patch of violets growing under a mature hemlock tree. These violets were in one of the few private spaces in their front yard, a highly visible corner in an otherwise quiet neighborhood. As a child, 33 3 4 a w e e d b y a n y o t h e r na m e I would gather handfuls of violets in bouquets and then just sit and soak up their color. More than twenty years later, when I was working as an agricultural extension educator at Cornell University, I got a call from a gentleman who wanted to know what he could do about the violets in his lawn.
Perhaps this spring on a sunny day when it is too early to plant my vegetables, I’ll go after the multiflora rose in the little woodland next to the community center. Or maybe I’ll wait until late summer, go and collect some rose hips, and make some tea while I think about it some more. Rose Hip Tea Grind approximately 3–4 cups of rose hips. Boil in 2–3 cups of water for 20 minutes. Strain the liquid to remove the pulp. It’s delicious hot or cold. (from Kiowa Conservation District, Colorado) Wild Garlic M a r c h , B o y d C o mm u n i t y C e n t e r , P i tt s b u r g h Just on the other side of the pool parking lot, with no street crossings, is the town community center.