Musings of a Sidewalk Explorer: Weeds

Ms. Patti, one of our educators who has been teaching preschool and kindergarten aged children at Moose Hill for 25 years, continues her daily walks around her neighborhood and shares what she sees and a few fun activities and resources for you.

Given half a chance, plants will take that opportunity to grow, grow, grow…whether you want them to or not. During my daily jaunts, I have noticed a number of plants that have escaped their confines, or have just seemingly wandered in and taken up residence. 

The plant that wins the Houdini-escape-artist award is grape hyacinth. I enjoy this delicate pop of purple in spring flower beds and yet more often than not, it has found its way into the lawn. I’m not sure how this plant travels, but in more than half of the homes featuring grape hyacinth, there is a satellite plant somewhere in the lawn. Perhaps it is in cahoots with violets, which are also blooming all over the place.  

And then there are dandelions. I know it is called a weed, but a weed is just a misplaced plant and I appreciate the tenacity of dandelions. If a dandelion has taken root along a road edge or meadow, it grows tall and proud, ready to send its seeds flying in the slightest breeze. If it is in your lawn where it is mowed frequently, they grow short and bloom below the level of the lawn mower blades.  Smart, yes?  

The groundcover in my own front bed is currently experiencing failure to thrive.  Many of the vines are dying or just not looking healthy.  I have redirected the healthy vines to make it look fuller…it’s like a bad garden combover. In other yards I have seen this same plant presenting like a small shrub, and one was even growing out of a rain gutter…not exactly sure how it got up there, perhaps it wanted to be a bromeliad, either way, both were healthier than the one in my yard. 

Have some dandy fun:

10 fun activities with dandelions

The Legend of the Dandelion

Make your own watercolor paint

Do you have these escapee plants?  I say try to appreciate them and don’t let them drive you to distraction.  Let the pollinators have their snack stop and enjoy the color palette of these misunderstood plants. Be well and stay safe! 

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