A Weed by Any Other Name

Multiflora rose is a state-listed invasive plant.

"What's in a name?" A fictional young woman named Juliet once asked that question. "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet," she says. 

But what if the rose is a non-native invasive plant?

“Multiflora rose is an aggressive, stubborn landscape invader with recurved thorns along the green stems,” says Rose Hiskes, a diagnostician at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station and co-chair of the Connecticut Invasive Plants Working Group (CIPWG). “And it’s a state-listed invasive plant.”

Getting Into the Weeds With Invasive Plant Management

Charlotte Pyle and Donna Ellis teach about invasive plant management.

They were innocent-looking seedlings in June, but by the end of August, most weeds are like toddlers on a tantrum—you can't ignore them. Japanese stiltgrass, mugwort, and more all seem to say, "In your face, weed whacker.” 


These unwanted plants are irritating and inconvenient, but their damage extends far beyond the emotions of landowners who wish the weeds would just go away. Unfortunately, invasive plant management is a year-round job and a sometimes perplexing one.

Weeds, Weeds, More Weeds. What to do?

Yellow nutsedge, Cyperus esculentus

September invites fall lawn and garden advice. Soon, articles on bare patch repair, leaf composting, and fall pruning will flutter onto screens and pages like leaves from the trees.

This year, I’m suggesting a less conventional autumn topic: Weeds.

Why? Since July, I’ve barely gone a day without hearing, “I can’t believe the weeds this year.” The reasons may be more subtle than most of us expect. And the answers? More subtle still. See Zip06/TheDay for some intriguing insights into the weeds of 2018. 


Homely, helpful: Don't pull that weed!

Monarch caterpillar on milkweed leaf

More than a few plants that we humans call weeds, other creatures call home. Even among our cherished ornamental flowers, some need to stand long after the beauty pageant is over in order to support the insects they host.

Such is the case with the milkweed family. Long after the flowers have gone, the leaves are critical for monarch butterfly larvae. If you want to support bees, birds and butterflies, here's a short article from The Day in New London, CT, on the "homely" plants that do a lot of good for the creatures that pollinate our food crops and flowers

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