Help identifying weed/plant

dschur720August 10, 2014

I am pretty sure this is actually a weed, but the bees and caterpillars seem to like it. If it is not an aggressive nasty sort of weed, I am ok with letting it stay in the wildflower/butterfly garden.

Stem is a semi purple sort of colour (almost like rhubarb). Has a tap root, but pulls out pretty easily. Grew pretty quickly (thus my belief it is a weed), is just starting to develp a small cone-shaped flower spear (you can just see in the picture)

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

compare with pokeweed


    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 8:31PM
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pitimpinai(z6 Chicago)

It is prolific this year, isn't it? I have removed several from my garden this year already.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 9:25PM
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Awesome, thanks Ken. It definitely is Pokeweed. I guess some birds visiting the birdbath left me a gift. Based on what I read I better get rid of it. Poison, and "hideously invasive" were common terms. I think I will go paint some 2-4 D on it right away.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 9:39PM
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It's a native plant and good for wildlife, but your space is probably too small for it. The poison part is a bit overhyped; obviously humans have been living around it for thousands of years.

No need to use chemicals, it's pretty easy to dig out if you wet the ground well first.

Has a root like a carrot.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 7:46AM
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As far as poisonous...native americans ate it in various ways. Most didn't die (we assume)...I've eaten the boiled leaves many times...and I'm still typing.
That doesn't mean it's not poisonous...just that the preparation leeches most of the toxin out. Most plants contain some level of toxic compounds to discourage predation.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 7:48AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

As you said, "Has a tap root, but pulls out pretty easily." That's all that's needed to get rid of unwanted sprouts.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 12:44PM
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