Central Virginia Organic Gardener

"And 'tis my faith that every flower enjoys the air it breathes." - William Wordsworth, 1798

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Pretty, But "Noxious"

Sorry, this is the "do as I say, not as I do" kind of advice. Morning glories (Ipomoeas) in all their "glory" are very pretty flowers (see above). However, many state agricultural departments list it as a "noxious weed" and try to eradicate it (though Virginia seems t0 list only purple loosestrife and European wand loosestrife as noxious). Morning glory seeds, which you can buy at garden centers, will quickly grow up fences and other plants and eventually present a smothering blanket. They tolerate poor, dry soils well and produce many seeds. Stop this vine once you see it, or, if you must have it, at least cut it back before it sets seed. Why is this a "do as I say, not as I do" blog entry? See the photo below- this is not the only point of morning glory invasion I have to deal with- and soon!Happy gardening! And weeding!


Anita said...

What is the novice gardener to do? :)

I'm not a gardener, but this post makes me wonder about a young, new homeowner or renter, browsing the seed selections at the store, and then making decisions based on how pretty plants are; or on what the parents or grandparents have or had in their yards. Hmmm... Does this happen often? And resulting with "oops?"

Judy Thomas said...

This happens often- I bought a few "noxious" plant seeds when I was a newbie gardener and was given a few by friends as a "gift" and still work to remove them. If you want to avoid this, you need to do some research: if you google noxious weeds you will be brought to the USDA and APHIS lists of noxious weeds. The US National Arboretum has a nice website on invasive garden plants: