I thought this would make for an interesting thread...
As for myself, they are Geraniums, Marigolds and Mums...
Boring...same ole', same ole'...
I know most of the gardeners that I know that get them and fill their pots and gardens with them want to be able to plant and forget about them...so to speak...they are easy and very hardy. Well, yes they are. When I see them myself I can't pass by them quick enough. I choose my plants according to them being benificial for more than one thing besides their beauty...either being a host or nectar plant for a butterfly, provide nourishment for birds...such as seeds and/or nectar for hummingbirds (like Salvias)...or bring benifical insects such as ladybugs (like Yarrow), and higher pollen content for the bees.
1. A rose that doesn't have a scent. Seems pointless.
2. Big, fat, frilly Bearded Irises. Old varieties with slender, clean, natural shapes look better to me.
3. Split-trumpet daffodils. They look like someone punched them on the nose.
alyssum - way overused, it makes me sneeze, and it's just kinda ugly IMO
Bird of Paradise, unless it's used in a tropical setting - also overused here
large white calla lily - screams 'funeral' - when I worked in a hospital we used to groan when they were delivered to our patients. For some reason, the smaller colored varieties don't have that effect on me.
Leyland cypress - used way too much; there are better screening options than a towering wall of green.
Trumpet trees - Brugmansia - too tropical for "regular" gardens; also overused here
Wax leaf begonias - look fake
There are many plants I find easy to admire on someone else's property and morning glory is one of them. I did plant it in pots to climb along with the Mandevilla vines in this container and just hope the birds don't spread the seeds.
Hibiscus - because they are so huge and, in my area, barely bloom before frost arrives.
The ground cover someone planted 20some years ago along my garage where I have my main flowerbed. Been fighting that stuff for years without hope.
Daffodils after they bloom. Previous owners also planted lots of them along the garage. I have been moving them to other areas but still have a lot.
Well, have to go to work. You all have a great day. Lyn
Ice plant ground cover is used around here a lot. People planted it thinking it would help with erosion and be fire safe. Trouble is, it takes tons of water and fertilizer to look good and the roots are not deep enough to anchor the soil. Looks pretty in the spring when the hills are all magenta, that's about it.
shadowgarden - I used to feel that way about the color orange. Now I've reformed and I enjoy it. One of the many nice things about specific colors in the garden is that if we don't like them we don't have to have them.
pirl, I also didn't care for orange. Then 2 yrs ago I saw a couple of orangey plants I like. Now I have a "hot" border of orange and yellow plants! And I don't like magenta, but somehow I now have several plants in that color. Go figure...
One of my neighbors hates orange and visits every year when the orange Asiatic lilies are in bloom. She stands, arms crossed, stares at them and repeats her mantra of "I hate orange". She could look at the other 29 gardens but I guess she's just born to complain.
On the other hand I don't like weeds or dead plants but I don't go over with arms crossed and visit each garden telling her what I don't like.
She won't like one of the new Asiatic lilies at all!
i dont like monkey grass , its in every yard . and berberry i dont know how you spell that . we had 3, 5 footers we pulled out . ferns are ok but im getting tired of everyone talking about them around here. i get it ,we are country and you need them hanging from your porch . try a pretty hanging basket for a change . sorry . lol
junipers , burning bushes are in every yard . theres also an azalea and a dogwood in every yard here but i like those . my neighbor has a mimosa tree and i love how it looks but for goodness sakes sweep the sidewalk . have you ever tried to push a stroller in that mess . weeds dont bother me that much i ignore them . and only pull them when they are tall enough to pull with out kneeling .lol
1) Forsythia-we just yanked out out of the back that we had been cutting back to almost nothing every year, only to have it get 7' tall again. Oh..and every single little green twig that fell on the ground is now a rooted plant..arghh!!! Pretty, but just too overwhelming. It is being replaced with a Buffalo currant..still gets pretty yellow spring flowers, but they smell nice AND make edible fruit.
2) Creeping charlie..is this stuff immortal? It's like the mythical hydra..I cut off one strand, and it seems like seven more replace it.
3) The annual salvia sold at garden centers in purple and red. I just plain don't get it's appeal..and it's also WAY overused.
I could add to this list: anything with thorns that doesn't give me berries/fruit in return for my pain and suffering incurred while tending to it (this means you, barberry bushes that are only still living 'cause my fiance likes you for some strange reason..)
The ajuga someone planted in the front beds years ago that is now all over in the lawn
Datura-for being so easy for everyone else to grow, yet impossible for me to even germinate
"I should have added this at the beginning: Palm Trees
They're everywhere here. Everywhere."
Now them's fightin' words to someone who lives in zone 5 and spends half of her vacation drooling over that which she cannot have at least not in the yard, anyway! ;-)
Just kidding..I feel the same way about maple trees and their little "helicopter" seeds.
Hmmmm...speaking of trees...
Here in the mid west, from the time just before the cottonwood fuzz is flying, there is a thick heavy sap that falls from the trees and with it the seeds. WARNING! don't park your car anywhere near one of these trees then...the sap is like cement and it takes a zillion car washes for the stuff to come off...and then if you leave your car too long, the sap will be gooy enough to allow the cottonwood fuzz to adhere to the car then you'll be driving away in a powder puff...ROFL!
No Joke...learned my lesson the hard way!
I'm anti Marigolds - WAY over used and they stink. I could say the same for Houttuynia but, thankfully, they're not over used but the stench reminds me of the bean dinner on "Blazing Saddles".
Silver Mound artemesia is fine and I have had Limelight in the past (ripped it out) and can't believe I bought it again but this time for a pot. It was supposed to be mixed with others but now I think I'll leave it in a pot all by itself. Is that the one that needs deadheading, Jo Ann?
My artemisia stands about 8 inches tall, and spreads by runners. No seeds. A friend gave it to me a few years ago, and she has heavier soil, and says it doesn't run for her. It's very pretty for bouquets. At least it smells nice when I'm pulling all those runners out. I know it's not Silver Mound. I had that one for a few years and loved it, but it's only marginally hardy here.
I forgot about those..I lived in an apt that had one of those in the yard..my ex and I spent a few days looking for the cat pee in the house the first spring I was there and had the windows open. We then realized it was the smell of the stupid, stinking flowering tree outside.. why ANYONE would deliberately plant something that has a faintly-cat-pee-esque scent is beyond me!
My sense of smell was greatly diminished when I had an operation in 2001 so maybe I should be very grateful since we have boxwoods in the back, along with pines and I understand they give off an unpleasant odor at times, along with a Bradford Pear in the front.
My husband is doing battle with a forsythia - I don't mind it because it is in back of the garage between us and the neighbors but they do grow like crazy. I agree about the maples, we got rid of 2 huge ones a few years ago - now we actually have grass and flowers in our front yard. lol I have some ajuga,too and a ground cover (ugly) that someone planted years ago. Was just outside trying to deal with all the daffodil plants now that they are not blooming. They were here when we moved in 20 some years ago and I am trying to move them to areas I don't want for other plants. (wherever that is!!) Got to go to work. You all have a great day. Lyn
Calif_Sue Northern California United States (Zone 9a)
Junipers, just a nest for cobwebs
Marigolds, stink plus folks are guilty of doing the 'soldiers in a row' look with them, I actually cringe when I see people load up their carts with marigolds, ugh!
Wax leaf begonias, ugly!
And to think I used to envy people with forsythia and maple trees! LOL
We have a lot of Artemisia native to California, aka sagebrush, mugwort, etc. Not only does it stink, it's very bad for people with allergies.
Oh, Sue, do I agree about Juniper! Hate those rocket plants!
OK..I'm going to jump in ...Shirley poppies - they look weedy, spindly and they have never ever bloomed for me, here on the prairie!! Sweet Autumn Clematis- I as a clematis newbie, planted them by seed and they grew so fast that one caught a girly pumpkin and threw her to the other side of the yard...then of course I had to read about their invasiveness... so they are no longer...but now I'm on the lookout for the seedlings. Eupatorium rugosum 'Chocolate'- I planted it 3 years ago and it is the worst raggedly thug gift giver ever! My 'Chocolate' disappeared after the first year, but its unsightly, rangly seedlings have been sprouting all over the yard ever since! The seedlings seem to shoot up overnight with large gangly weedy looking leaves...and I hate that I ever planted that 'Chocolate' all over again!
I have to agree with that ugly salvia. i hate that are that horrible orange red.
there are so many beautiful salvia , why do they even sell those ones.
Junipers were everywhere in new mexico. my brother and I called the spider bushes.
There are some artemisias that i really love. I have never had a spreading varity. i also have found that planting them around roses, keeps the aphids away from the roses, but they cover the artemisia. i love the lacy silver one and the varigated one.
It's so interesting how plants can behave differently in different gardens. I have had the "Chocolate" eupatorium in my garden for several years and it has been a very attractive plant for me. I have moved it once because it got too big for the spot where I had it and I gave a division of it to my son. I don't think he's had any trouble with it. I have never had any seedlings show up. I had it in the sun where did very well and I now have it in medium shade where it's doing just fine although it doesn't bloom quite as heavily. The only drawback I have experienced is that when it was in the sun it attracted hordes of tiny little flies (at least they looked like flies) when in bloom. I haven't seen that since I moved it to the shadier site.
I don't like:
Ladybells - very, very invasive - spreads by runners and seed, impossible to eradicate and within a few years will be infesting every border in your yard and probably your neighbors' too.
Houttuynia - it spread in a scattered way for me - not useful as a groundcover and the smell of it makes me feel sick.
Tall asters - although I still have them I have relegated them to obscure areas where I can neglect them because 1- they require so much staking, 2- the lower stems get all brown and ratty looking so you have to carefully plant something else to hide those stems if you want to keep your garden looking healthy, 3-The branches are so woody and tough that cutting them down in the fall or spring is quite arduous and 4 - in my opinion they don't bloom long enough to justify all that work. But I guess I must disagree with myself because I still haven't completely gotten rid of them.
Chris~ agree 'Chocolate' is an attractive plant...it is the gift of it's thug offsprings that causes the trouble as 'Chocolate' does not come true from seed. Glad it's behaving itself in your gardens and hope it continues to so...
The plants I don't like are the ones my neighbors allow to go wild: St. John's Wort, blackberry vines, and ivy. They keep creeping over and under my fences and I sometimes feel that half of my gardening time is taken up by trying to keep those out of my garden.
1-Canna. I'm probably angering lots of people here. This plant has its own forum no less!
The foliage is interesting, but the flower heads are a muddled mess.
2-Those weak spindly looking dwarf iris.
3-Celosia. Any variety, any loud color, but especially the convoluted ones that look like brains. Yeesh.
Regarding dracena..my girly pumpkin calls them dracula...pointed like his cape or teeth, but more likely when she was younger dracula was easier to say than dracena.
Winterrobin~ I have to agree with the dwarf iris..detest them,,,but then again, I detest the standard iris that my friends try to unload on me every year... Perhaps you have tried celosia ' pink candles' ...Critter introduced them to me several swaps back...they are quite stunning in the gardens with their magenta to burgundy leaves and they'' call every flying pollinator in your neighborhood to your yard, if you're scarce of pollinators. There is one drawback..you have to deadhead regularly when the blooms decline or they'll eagerly reseed for you. Fortunately, the seedlings are very easy to pull up.
garden6 I actually planted Pink Flamingo celosia once. It sounds very similar to your Pink Candles. It's pretty in a way, and NOTHING like those revolting brains and other
too-bright celosias you see at garden centers all the time. But for more lasting results, I planted penisetum (sp?) "Moudry" for deep burgundy leaves. It's very graceful.
I hate palm seedlings too. Every month or so I have to spend an entire Saturday morning plucking the little buggers from my lawn, the walkways, cracks in the concrete slab around my house, the gutters . . . they're everywhere!!!!!
Sounds like the same problem we have, but with maple or elm seedlings. We just mow over them. If they are in the garden area, they are pulled. The absolute worst are the sumac seedlings. If you don't catch them early, they are a pain to eradicate. Plus, they stink.
Sumac! DS dug some up one year (it grows wild) and took it to her home in the suburbs. DB and I thought she should know better. Haven't heard her mention it but I would suspect she has regretted taking it. The maple seedlings are a pain too, altho we also mow over them. BTW, my BIL ask why maples only seed every 2 years. Anyone know if that is true? The two I had in my yard made a mess every year!!!
I have a hummingbird vine that puts up shoots all over but they are mowed off. In the flowerbeds I pull them out.
English Ivy when it goes female and blooms. It happens in Sept. here when the weather is hot and the scent is nauseating to me. The yellowjackets love it. I try to trim off the branches now before it blooms...nipping it in the bud.
Goathead puncture vine. A nice-looking little green mat with pretty yellow flowers. The seeds have horns that will punture bicycle tires, cripple dogs, and have to be removed from the soles of shoes with pliers. I ask permission to remove them from other's places too. No one realises the horrible stickers come from such a harmless- looking groundcover volunteer.
Stepford Wives color spot bloomin' bedding plants. I love surprise in a garden, not conformity. I feel sorry for the poor pansies, petunias, marigolds and their well-behaved siblings. When the Stepford Husbands "accidentally" spray them with Round-Up it is a mercy-killing.
I've already listed my three, but this year we have tons and tons of oak tree babies popping up all over (where the squirrels buried the acorns, I guess). They still have the acorns attached when we pull them up. Kind of neat, but they seem to be in the nice soft dirt in the garden beds mainly.
Hi Polly,squirrls are lazy,thay like nice soft beds and planters and newly planted anything where the soil is loose.
I detest sumak in the garden but in the fall , along the hiways ,its beautiful color.
Thanks for the compliments and the advisory on Sumac. Every autumn I tell myself I've got to pull over somewhere along the highway and dig a few small starts with good color to transplant to my very own driveway. Perhaps I should rethink that. I read somewhere the berries make a lemonade-like drink if you soak them in water(?).
I did not like Oregon Grape (Mahonia) when I moved here and tore alot of it out of the places I wanted to garden. I have come to appreciate it for its soft yellow spring blossoms, lovely dusty blue berries, startling orange-mahogony leaf color (which can occur anytime) in addition to the dark green leaves. It is unappealing to grazing animals. Now I encourage it and have appologised for my ignorant Mahonia massacre.
I would have listed poison oak as my #1 nemesis but it seemed so obvious. I was surprised once by a large display of honey gathered from the blossoms of poison oak. It was supposed to relieve arthritis pain(?), but I didn't try it. Anyway, that gave me a new respect for my old enemy.
1. Orange daylily. were in my yard when we bought the house...every where and spread everywhere...almost can't get rid of them...The leaves get brown and ugly at the bottom and you constantly have to tidy them up. Where they were in my yard was damp all the time and when you cleaned them up I was always getting bitten by nats or mosquito. Just hate, hate, hate orange daylily!
2. Obedient Plant. Spreads and fills an area in one season and takes over. Crowds out all the other flowers in the same flower bed. Not especially attractive foliage and when it finally blooms late in the season it really is not worth the wait.
3. Mulberry Trees. We had about 7 or 8 Mulberry Trees down one side of our yard when we first bought our house. The berries seem to fall all along the side walk way. (So many!!!! They would cover it) Constantly having to rake/sweep them up. Got the broom all stained. Everyone would walk on them and get them all over the soles of their shoes and then bring them in the house...Ruined many a Rug!
I know the birds love them, but...
I'm curious about the comments about sumac. 2 gardens near my home have Staghorn Sumac growing in them. In one garden it is kept pruned with the trunks bare to about 4 feet up from the ground. It's shape is very picturesque like something you would see in a Japanese garden. I've never seen any sprouts around it so I don't know how the gardener deals with them. The other one I've seen is fuller in shape but still a nice size for a garden...again, I've seen no sign of spreading. Maybe they are just incredibly diligent gardeners but I hardly ever see them working in their gardens.
I did some volunteer gardening a few years ago at a local college and there was a sumac in one of the garden areas I worked on. There were a good number of 2 to 4 feet tall offspring around it (the garden had been untended for several years) when I began working there but they were relatively easy to remove and we left the main one as an anchor plant in the large garden. It didn't present a problem but I had only worked there for three years when the school moved to a Chicago campus so I don't know what's happening there now.
Sumac does grow wild around here so I am puzzled by the apparent good behavior I see in the gardens I've seen. Maybe the conditions in the gardens here are not ideal enough to for it to go crazy.
Sumac is very invasive here. We've pulled up runners 20-30 feet away from the main sumac, and all along the runner baby sumacs were coming up. It's runners always head for the best dirt, the flower beds.
They are very pretty, and if all that's around it is lawn you could just keep mowing the shoots down, but it does spread to all the garden beds.
Polly is right. Plus, when they drop their "leaves" it's more like branches. Messy, invasive plants that stink. I can't stand the way they smell. And they not only spread by runners, they also send out gazillions of seeds that invade every free piece of land they can find. When I do cut one down, I then paint the cut area with Brush Be Gone, and that seems to help control the suckers. Painting instead of spraying was a recommendation from a DEC friend.
Some of your descriptions sound exactly like Ailanthus altissima otherwise known as Stinkweed. It looks very much like sumac but grows to be a large tree. The clues I see mentioned that say Ailanthus to me are: 20 foot runners with babies sprouting all along the way...the smell, when it blooms, is an unpleasant musky smell but the smell when you crush a twig or leaf is nauseating... the compound leaves are long, twiggy and hard to rake up...and it spreads visciously by runners and seeds. There was an Ailanthus in our next door neighbors yard just outside of our bedroom window. I spent hours every summer pulling the invaders from all over my yard.
This next door house was neglected rental property for many years and Ailanthus saplings were growing all along the foundation of the house. Then it became vacant and after about 6 weeks of no one mowing the lawn the back yard was a miniature forest of trees. Fortunately someone was eventually hired to keep the lawn mowed.
New homeowners moved in. After about a year we finally decided to ask them if we could have the tree removed. I told them all about Ailanthus (which is considered a noxious weed) and they gave us permission to have it cut down. Of course they were not interested in helping to pay for it.
We paid $1000 to have the tree removed and it was the best money we ever spent. They moved out shortly after that and then my husband cut down all the saplings along the foundation of the house and sprayed the stumps with round up. That really helped but there are still some coming back. Somehow we have to make sure a tree is not allowed to mature over there again.
Could some of you be mistaking Ailanthus for Sumac? When young they really do look alike but you can tell them apart for sure by the smell of crushed leaves and twigs.
I am 99.99% sure what I have is the staghorn sumac, since they are quite prevalent here. It is more shrub-like and not as full as the picture I saw of the Ailanthus altissima. I will examine them more closely, but with those red clusters forming in the summer and fall, I'm thinking this is what we have.
Oh, for sure, if they have the red velvety "flowers" and seeds you've got Staghorn Sumac. I should have thought of that. It's so obvious.
I was thinking about that garden I volunteered at the college. In the large central garden we always had babies from the nearby walnut trees, Ailanthus, and Sumac. When I was weeding the only way I could tell them apart for sure was by the smell of the crushed leaves when I pulled them out.
So I'm still fascinated that the Sumac I see in gardens around me doesn't seem to be that aggressive. But after the warnings I've seen here, I am not tempted to try one in my garden. I'll just admire the neighbor's.
Maybe there are different strains of sumac around the country, and I must have the most polite, mild mannered ones. I have four slender trunks that have been on my property forever, and they have NEVER spread, never overstepping their bounds, which is at the edge of a wooded area. The birds love the deep burgundy fruits. My only complaint is that the branches are bare and homely until mid-May. It's very late to leaf out. I'm thinking of sending a rambling rose up the trunks.