The predicted rain finally arrived late last night and continued steadily until after daybreak. It is 37 degrees now and temperatures are expected to reach only 43. Today’s brisk chill caps off a cool week that contrasted sharply with the sunny, eighty-degree days from the week before when warm air seemed destined to stay.
During a short tour around the garden yesterday I was reminded of my plans to deal with the Bishops’ Weed this year.
This unruly member of the garden’s plant collection is back and filling out quickly.
Bishops’ Weed is rather pretty, variegated ground cover that brightens up a rather difficult narrow space which otherwise would probably just be brown mulch. It has a light green color and a delicate, white lacy flower.
A friend passed along Bishops’ Weed when I first began perennial gardening at my former home. This ground cover survived in the shade that dominated much of my old garden where it mostly stayed put. I do not remember it being a problem and must not have thought so because, when it came time to move and start a new garden, the Bishops’ Weed came too.
Though my current garden space is mostly sunny, I found a partially shaded spot for this plant on the rather narrow, north side bed between my house and the neighboring driveway. It is a ground cover so I expected it to spread, but was unprepared for how aggressively it grew.
Bishops’ Weed spreads by rhizomes and I have learned since it can become invasive. One might think the name would be a tip-off, but not necessarily. Consider Eutrochium purpureum or Joe-Pye Weed, which is a native plant and one frequently recommended as a favorite garden addition in this area.
Anyway, I searched several reference sites for more information on Bishops’ Weed, but did not find it on these invasive warnings for this area:
- Going Native: Invasive, Exotic Plants of the Southeast -North Carolina State University
- Invasive Exotic Species List -North Carolina Native Plant Society
- Plants to Avoid in the Southeastern United States -North Carolina Botanical Garden
I cannot remember if I have seen Bishops’ Weed growing in other gardens I have visited. I will have to check around more to see if it is a conservation worry or just a bit of a nuisance in my own little world.