CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A gardening friend and I were chatting about good vs. bad plants recently, and we started talking about those "good" plants that can go "bad" in your garden.
For example, English Ivy. While it's lovely in the right place, a visit to the Carriage Trail in Charleston shows visitors just what can happen when it gets out of control. My neighbor is battling a stand of ivy planted by a previous homeowner that is threatening the woods near his yard.
My friend was complaining about liriope -- she planted it years ago, on the recommendation of a landscaper, and now she's got it everywhere and is having trouble getting rid of it.
I'm the same way with periwinkle. I planted it a long time ago and now I'm dying to get rid of it.
Another friend spoke up about Japanese anemone, saying he can't get it out of his yard. And then there's creeping jenny; great if you want to cover a large area, but a pain in the neck if you like things tidy.
Many plants that are on invasive lists started out as seemingly harmless additions to the suburban landscape. I've seen butterfly bushes on many "do not plant" lists lately as they reseed so rapidly.
What are your "good plants gone bad?"
My recent column about the wildflowers along West Virginia's highways prompted this email from Mike Lizotte Jr.
"Nice article on wildflowers! We're the company that has been supplying Sherri and before her Anna Shahan and the Adopt a Highway program with their wildflowers. We started working with Anna about 15 years ago and also have consulted with the Dept. of Highways regarding recommendations for their program as well!"
Mike included this link to his company, American Meadows: http://www.americanmeadows.com/members-meadows/northeast/northeast-shahan
Congratulations are in order
The Kanawha Garden Club has honored the Carriage Trail Committee with the Garden Club of America Historic Preservation Commendation.
The citation reads: "For your leadership and untiring efforts in restoring horticultural authenticity, preserving the unique character and enabling public appreciation of the historic Carriage Trail."
This citation was approved at the request of Sara Hoblitzell. In her letter to the Garden Club of America, she recited the history of the Carriage Trail and the efforts of the committee and its volunteers, described its plantings, and noted, as an example, Nancy Ward's leadership in removal of ivy and development of the herbicide policy.