Sunday, October 26, 2008

Weed Warrior Battles

Today I took a short break from the magazine's final layout and proofing to hack back bittersweet vines in Rock Creek Park with the Sierra Club. While there I pull up a big patch of mile-a-minute vine which had sprung back up in a cleared section of the park and was full of pretty berries ready to pop. It felt good to rip it all out and see the tangles of prickly vines pile up.

Meanwhile my own garden is a weed's paradise right now. Somehow it is just more satisfying to weed somewhere else where you can clear an area and say "done" then go home and leave it all behind. Weeding in the home garden is never done and never so easy.
This week brought one big weed surprise as well. I found kudzu growing just a few blocks from my house at a cleared construction site. I did the classic Buckwheat double-take when I first laid eyes on it. My first thought was, "Oh goody, is that a squash vine covering that whole slope?" but as I got closer I saw sure enough that it was kudzu. Que the Jaws theme music as I sucked in my breath and examined the horror of it all. Now, we are technically supposed to be just a tad too far north for this monster, but thanks to global warming and fairly mild Maryland winters of late, it looks to be here to stay. I have alerted the property owners and hope it is removed soon before it spreads elsewhere in the community.

4 comments:

themanicgardener said...

Kudzu-- No, let me rephrase that: KUDZU!!! Not good. I left a message for you over Blotanical way, but it doesn't look as if you get there very often, so-- I did some research on this stuff for a lawn article, (the kudzu portion became a post) and was astonished by how far it's moved, both north and west. I think I'm safe here in Montana, but maybe not . . .
--Kate

WashingtonGardener said...

Thanks Kate for stopping by - you are correct I need to stop by Blotanical - I don't think I've been back since I first registered there.
Can you believe I have a neigbor who raised a stink that I wanted to get rid of the kudzu? This person is a bit "off" in general and I shouldn't have been surprised. He believes all plants are to be treasured and does not believe in the term "weeds." I should note that he lives in a high-rise apartment so I think his perspective is a but skewed.

themanicgardener said...

Uh-huh. Well, when the kudzu blocks all the light from his windows, then maybe he'll see the light--or maybe not. Some people... Show him some of the scary pictures available. I put one of the best going on my post, and you're welcome to use it. "Kudzu" in the search box actually works. If you have any questions about how to tackle your sprout, that post will also direct you to the best site I know on the subject. Good luck! I hope you post on what you do and how it works.
--Kate

WashingtonGardener said...

Hi again, Kate, will jump over to look at your article on Blotanical now. The county is supposedly coming to nip that kudzu now - will keep an eye on it though.