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I have NO idea what happened, or if it's just rain, but we have literally zillions of the same kind of thing sprouting everywhere. It is particularly bad in the new beds where we ripped out some lawn, but we also have a lot that showed up in our containers, all over the lawn, etc.. I've got it a bit under control, but only after having pulled a TON of them. They are even sprouting through the mulch, around and between the main stems of our 'real' plants like the impatiens. Does anyone know what this stuff is (the serrated leafy thing in the foreground)? I believe it grows into a larger plant with the same kind of leaf. Appreciate any help since I'd like to prevent it from happening in future! I don't remember it happening last year.
I live in the same general area as you, and I always get TONS of those. They are either cottonwood or elm seedlings, I think. They even sprout in my mulch. The only way I know to get rid of them safely is to pull them. Fortunately, when they are that small, it isn't hard to do.
I get those, too. They do look like tree seedlings to me. And yes, I yank them out. They're easy to pull root and all when they're small, so I just round 'em all up each week and that's that. They are persistent, though!
I'm with enya -- get them out the first year. Had a small, beautiful stand of American Elms that I loved. Except for the millions of seedlings every spring! They sprout everywhere - be sure to check your gutters too. By year two they have a substantial tap root. By year three - forget it :)
They are elm seedlings. I have lost several elms to dutch elm disease and would recognize those saw tooth leaves anywhere. I have the same problem with maple seedlings here in Greenfield, WI. Just keep pulling them up, as previously stated, at least they are easy to pull, but time intensive. I work at a nursery so I have been pulling them out of our pots as well. They will germinate anywhere with the intense moisture we have had this spring into summer. If you want a weed to fight, try campanula rapunculoides. I have been fighting it for years.
irisboerer, I am so with your on campanula rapunculoides. The first year I started gardening I thought it was lovely where I did not want to garden, but boy it spreads and is impossible to get rid of. I sifted the soil for root segments and still get some of it to come up in that spot :(