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Plant Identification: SOLVED: Small woodland plant in zone 5

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Forum: Plant IdentificationReplies: 18, Views: 123
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plant_it
Valparaiso, IN

June 6, 2013
3:19 PM

Post #9548911

These plants are growing in small patches throughout the woods. They're also lining the paths in moist areas at woods' edge. Some are an inch high, some are up to 6 inches. Any idea what they are?

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cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

June 6, 2013
3:25 PM

Post #9548917

And they will get taller. I've always referred to them as weeds. The more moisture, the more they appear. We've had a lot of rain, and I have already pulled thousands of these plants.
jackthompson
Buffalo, NY
(Zone 5b)

June 7, 2013
7:36 AM

Post #9549778

Could it be some type of mint? Are the stems square?
Does it have a minty odor when the leaves are rubbed?
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

June 7, 2013
4:44 PM

Post #9550340

Jack, it's a very watery stem. Opposite leaves like mint, and as I recall, round stems, not square.
plant_it
Valparaiso, IN

June 8, 2013
4:52 AM

Post #9550749

Stems are round. Yes, like Cathy said, these little guys have a watery stem.

I was thinking maybe they are stinging nettle seedlings, but I can't find any pictures of stinging nettle seedlings to compare them to. Now I'm thinking maybe they are Clearweed seedling (Pilea pumila). Here's what makes me think maybe they are Clearweed:
http://www.wildmanstevebrill.com/Plants.Folder/Nettle.html

I've read that Clearweed is one of the few native plants that's developed resistance to garlic mustard. I have a bumper crop of garlic mustard! So if it turns out to be Clearweed, I'll actually be quite happy. : )

Cville_Gardener

Cville_Gardener
Middle TN
United States
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
5:00 AM

Post #9550753

Possibly Jewelweed?


greenthumb99

greenthumb99
Lucketts, VA
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
5:05 AM

Post #9550757

Plant_it - Thanks for the link to that excellent guide to nettles.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

June 8, 2013
6:53 AM

Post #9550909

Don't seem watery enough for jewel weed, but considering how they take off in damp soil, kind of iffy.

Cville_Gardener

Cville_Gardener
Middle TN
United States
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
7:29 AM

Post #9550941

I don't know for certain either from the photos. Here's some I have along our back fence at the woodland's edge where the soil is usually damp to wet.

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beverlyfarmboy
Beverly, MA

June 8, 2013
8:59 AM

Post #9551015

[quote="plant_it"]These plants are growing in small patches throughout the woods. They're also lining the paths in moist areas at woods' edge. Some are an inch high, some are up to 6 inches. Any idea what they are?[/quote]

This is a very invasive weed in my garden
Pilea pumila
Common Name:
clearweed, Richweed
Scientific Name:
Pilea pumila (L.) GrayUrticaceae
Family Name:
Urticaceae - Nettle Family

my advice: stay far away from it. once it takes hold in a sunny spot it will spread its seed so thickly that it will overpower everything around it!
plant_it
Valparaiso, IN

June 8, 2013
1:26 PM

Post #9551199

Hi Cville_Gardener,
Your photo is definitely Jewel weed. I have them in my woods too. Mine get a beautiful yellow flower. I've heard some get an orange flower. The deer love them. They have a juicy, liquidy stem which makes me wonder if the deer eat them to get a little water. If you have quail in your area, they like the seeds. Also, if you have a Poison Ivy or Stinging Nettle rash, break a jewel weed plant in half and rub the sap on the irritated skin to soothe it. I tried it on my last case of poison ivy & it really does work! As you can see, I've really come to like my jewel weeds. : )

greenthumb99

greenthumb99
Lucketts, VA
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
1:38 PM

Post #9551207

I. pallida and I. campensis both have a single primary vein in their leaf, the mystery plant clearly has more. Don't see how It can be Jewel Weed.
plant_it
Valparaiso, IN

June 8, 2013
1:43 PM

Post #9551215

Thank you so much, beverlyfarmboy. Clearweed it is.

If anyone has a minute, I found this lovely guide to stinging nettle look-alikes: http://littlebrownmushroomwatcher.blogspot.com/2013/01/stinging-nettle-look-alikes.html
It shows stinging nettle, wood nettle, clear weed and white snakeroot.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

June 8, 2013
1:49 PM

Post #9551220

Beverly you are correct. It's a real stinker.

greenthumb99

greenthumb99
Lucketts, VA
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
1:51 PM

Post #9551224

themoonhowl posted this fine link the other day http://www.wildmanstevebrill.com/Plants.Folder/Nettle.html

Cville_Gardener

Cville_Gardener
Middle TN
United States
(Zone 7a)

June 8, 2013
2:11 PM

Post #9551247

Well, I don't know what Richweed is and haven't noticed it around here. But then I'm not an expert at identifying things from photos. So now I may be able to spot it up close if it's out there. I know my Jewelweed is Impatiens capensis with a lovely orange flower. I treasure it for it's anti-poison ivy properties. And one thing it does very well is shade out poison ivy which prefers sunlight. I'm very allergic to p.i. and have used the macerated jewelweed and it's "juice" for that purpose among other things. Looks like you can mark this one closed. :)

Thumbnail by Cville_Gardener
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plant_it
Valparaiso, IN

June 8, 2013
2:42 PM

Post #9551265

yes, thank you for reminding me.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

June 13, 2013
6:10 PM

Post #9558168

Cville, that is jewel weed. Definitely different from pilea pumila.

Cville_Gardener

Cville_Gardener
Middle TN
United States
(Zone 7a)

June 14, 2013
1:37 AM

Post #9558424

Yes, I know.

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