July 31, 2011

"[A]t a time of great environmental change and uncertainty, weeds may soon be all we’ve got left."

"Tolerate them, he advises; celebrate their exuberant resilience, adjust your perspective. Fight them, and we may end up with nothing."

From a review of "Weeds: In Defense of Nature’s Most Unloved Plants" by Richard Mabey.

As long as we're talking about books about weeds, there's also "Wicked Plants: The Weed That Killed Lincoln's Mother and Other Botanical Atrocities."

22 comments:

rhhardin said...

Wildflowers, they're called.

rhhardin said...

Nobody mentions non-environmental uncertainty these days.

Weeds may be no help there.

JOhn said...

Hmmm...I wonder why no one else has had this Damascus moment about how wonderful weeds are until now.

Ann Althouse said...

It's what I did in pre-Meade days. I'd just look at the yard and think: How can I conceive of this as a good thing?

AllenS said...

I'm doing my best, day after day, ridding this world of the box elder tree. That is the tree version of the weed.

traditionalguy said...

The beauty of wild plant growth is a myth.

God made them so we would have a job.

We are made to tend the garden, rule over the animals and multiply.

Weeds like thistles are our enemy. And then there is kudzu!

Sixty Grit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Meade said...

Weeds = job security.

Hagar said...

A weed is a plant that grows where you don't want it.

ricpic said...

What you have to do is think of dandelions as pretty yellow flowers. Resistance is futile.

edutcher said...

We heard a lot of this around 1970.

Ann Althouse said...

It's what I did in pre-Meade days. I'd just look at the yard and think: How can I conceive of this as a good thing?

She never knew her knight in shining armor would be armed with a rake and hoe instead of lance and broadsword.

The Crack Emcee said...

This is funny:

I recently worked as a Carbaryl Cowboy with the National Forest Service and came away from the experience with a profound appreciation for weeds. The damned things will truly grow anywhere, and the environmentalist twig boys hate 'em, but I started to admire their resilience.

I'm not worried about everything else dying out, but a world without weeds would be a sadder place.

Roy Lofquist said...

How To Tell If It'a a Weed

Grasp the plant between thumb and forefinger near the ground. Gently pull. If it comes out of the ground it's not a weed.

PatCA said...

I guess it's only a matter of time until they rehabilitate the reputation of ants.

Alt Suburbia: weeds and coyotes.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

There is nothing that will ever make Star Thistle anything other than noxious and hated.

There isn't enough Round Up in the world to kill that shit.

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

A weed is a plant growing where we don't want it to grow. White clover -- a great plant -- is a terrible weed in carrots because you can hardly wash the damned clover leaves off the carrots.

Weeds in general are nature's way of fighting monoculture.

Some weeds actually make things better because their deep roots bring up minerals from far into the subsoil and make them available for surface plants.

In my operation, if they don't suppress yield, harbor pests or diseases, or otherwise make a general pain in the arse of themselves ... I don't really care.

Synova said...

Moving to Florida and discovering that they plant St. Augustine grass ON PURPOSE was a huge eye opener.

Here in New Mexico we call our landscaping "Southwest Natural" and pretend it's on purpose.

rhhardin said...

Ontario makes eliminating noxious weeds a law (The Weed Control Act (1974))

"Every person in possession of land shall destroy all noxious weeds thereon."

The list includes some fairly pretty ones: Bull thistle, Chicory, Field bindweed, Goat's-beard, Wild carrot, Wild garlic, Yellow rocket.

The (used) book Ontario Weeds is a useful identification book, after Newcomb's Wildflower Guide.

HT said...

Weeds like thistles are our enemy. And then there is kudzu!

7/31/11 7:43 AM


No. Kudzu is an invasive vine, not a weed. Big difference. Also porcelain berry is an invasive vine. I've been hoping for pointers on how to PERMANENTLY be rid of it, but so far have come up empty.

HT said...

Sorry - read too quickly.

Scott M said...

Weeds are the Section 8 residents of my yard.

Heart_Collector said...

As long as you can smoke em fuck it.

You can always sell it.

Its like a money tree! (A tribute to you Carol).