Some of the best plants in my garden were given to me by other gardeners or came from plant swaps held by garden clubs.
When one is experienced, one knows a good plant deal when one sees it. However, novice gardeners need to be careful about plants that they are given. Take the loosestrife family that multiplies fast, for example, both the yellow circle flower and the gooseneck with the white bloom that hangs downwards. If you blink these will take over your entire yard!
Some plants that are given away multiply and spread everywhere, self-seed and need constant division, and are difficult to eradicate. For a few brief weeks of bloom, one gets stuck with a huge gardening problem.
Pass-along plants may also include pieces of undesirable plants growing in the pot with them. For example, daylilies may have grass or Bishop’s weed growing between them. Bishop’s weed is a plant with attractive green and white leaves used as a ground cover, and it is almost impossible to eradicate.
If your goal is a low maintenance garden, you might want to have a small trial bed where you segregate newcomers before placing them in your perennial border. Growing new arrivals in pots first is also a smart strategy. You can audition new inmates before making a long-term commitment to them for long-term residency. Otherwise, you may be overrun by mint, artemisia, golden rod, loosestrife, and other invasive species.
Don’t be afraid to discard unwanted specimens, instead of passing them along to others.
This is Moya Andrews, and today we focused on Pass-Along Plants.