Weed Bingo, Round 2: “Well, at least the flowers are pretty”


I planted a native plant bed with perennials last year and sort of forgot to keep track of what I put in there. So when this plant came up, I assumed I had planted it. And then it started coming up everywhere else in my garden. And then it grew to be like 5 feet high. And then it grew yellow flowers, and I knew I hadn’t planted anything in that bed that would bloom yellow. And then and only then, I knew I had a weed on my hands. What can I say: I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed.

I still left this plant and let it keep growing, because its leaves have the characteristic shape of a legume. That whole family of plants (including beans, peas, and alfalfa) fixes nitrogen, meaning that they take nitrogen from the air and put it in the ground, where other plants will be able to use it. When I see a plant with that leaf-shape, I’m always more inclined to let it keep growing, even if I didn’t plant it.

My helpful internet friends who know more about plants than I do identified it as yellow sweet clover. It is indeed a legume, and it also attracts bees (the internet says so, but also there was literally a bee on it just now when I went outside to take these pictures). That makes me want to leave it. But on the other hand, it doesn’t match the colour scheme of my front-yard beds (THIS IS A REAL THING. I DID THIS. I don’t know what came over me), so I’m gonna pull it, or maybe just cut it so I don’t disturb all the other nearby plants. Sorry, clover. I wanted to let you stay, but you grew too high, too fast. And in kind of the wrong spot.

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