Making friends with Weeds


Even the word makes some gardeners cringe….as if a garden magically stays weed free by itself.

Weeds are a part of life in the garden. ‘The Ying to a flower’s Yang’.  There is actually a beautiful balance to be found….growing flowers among the natural environment.

Most gardens that I plant, I try to scope out the natural growing patterns of the terrain. My gardens at the Agape Haus are under large Live Oak Trees. There are many native groundcovers, wildflowers and even rain lillies that some may call weeds…..I simply call them interesting plants I didn’t have to buy!

So what is a weed?

My favorite definition of a weed came from an old gardener. “A weed is anything growing where it is not supposed to.”  For instance…..Oxalisis is a flower bed is a  lovely, addition,  but Oxalis growing wild in a yard is considered a weed.

For me, I embrace most weeds. Weeds that flower are allowed to stay where they grow. Weeds that are prickly or are just grasses are composted. Weeds either bring joy (flower) or preserve life (compost) in the garden. Everything has it’s place in my garden. I simply plant around the ‘weeds’.

Summer months are full of weeds….but before you yank up that plant, ask yourself if it is part of the natural environment.  Perhaps it is a butterfly host plant, or it feeds the bees, or it holds the soil and helps fight erosion. Weeds can actually become a helpful additive to your natural garden.

Becoming friends with the native ‘weeds’….what a grand idea.

Happy Gardening, my friends.