If you think the Weed Twister has something to do with the narcotic
"weed", as many people most likely do, you're wrong!
If you wish to remove that plant by its roots, however, this is one
tool that can do it!
Also "weed poetry" as published on the Ergonica website, has nothing to
do with that specific species.
Many weeds deserve an appeal to your forgiveness. Is it rude to be
To warp this thread around to something half way serious, I have often
wondered if I am wasting my time pulling and hoeing the weed Purslane.
It only gets several inches tall and forms a dense carpet that would
probably exclude other taller weeds. If I keep letting it go to seed, I
think it would soon be the only surviving weed in the whole garden.
Maybe it wouldn't be good with some plants like carrots or spinach but I
can't think it would compete much with corn or cabbage.
This thought came to me when I was really tired of weeding last summer
and it's probably more an indication of laziness than it is a good idea.
PS don't tell me to eat the stuff. I know it's edible but it tastes bad
raw and I will not likely ever bother to try it cooked.
Weeds are only a plant that grows somewhere you don't want it to.
However, purslane from my experience seems to prefer acidic soil. So,
if you don't want to weed it, and don't want to eat it but can think of
some plants that like a more alkaline condition,then you have your
answer, Use lime/dolomite whenever you find purslane getting in your
way. Either that or get some ducks onto the job. They love the stuff.
My pet hate (weed)are grasses that the locals here in Tasmania call
twitch. Onion twitch and rope twitch are my biggest problem as if left
alone they eventually strangle everything else . I've been hand weeding
the stuff now, 7 days a week for 3 years but it still comes back. Time
to give in and crack out the 'Feusilade' a highly expensive & toxic
agricultural pesticide. As I'm getting too old for all that hand
weeding it's now a choice between poisoning the stuff or getting a
smaller more managable property. As this place
<http://tinyurl.com/y6tp3g is otherwise heaven on earth I'm going to
swallow my organic scruples and get nasty with the twitch.
That other kind of 'weed' has a number of agriculural uses, apart from
the psychoactive one. In Australia it's our biggest cash crop, even
In my mid 60's I still enjoy the odd special occassion toke.
One serious reason to weed is that most weeds transpire more water
than most cultivated plants. That's possibly ok when soil moisture is
abundant, not so good when water is a limiting growth factor.
In addition, most cultivated plant growth is limited by either available
light for photosynthesis (tall weed problems here), or a shortage of one
or more minerals. If the weeds are tying up the mineral needed, the
crop isn't going to produce like it could.
There are somw "weeds" that are beneficial - for instance, the mosquito fern,
Azolla, has N fixing bacteria; this can benefit unfertilized paddy rice.
But that's not true of most weedy species.
Speaking of weeds, if you'd like a nice tour of weed biology, pick up a
copy of WC Muenscher's book Weeds, preferably an early edition. Ignore
any and all references to chemical control -- most that were used then
are too toxic to even consider now -- but read about the cultural controls
that were used before we had Roundup and similar...
They still work well if we can get people to use them...
I don't weed much, except in the flowerbeds right in front of
my house. I like them to be neat.
Chickweed takes over the paths in my veg garden. I toss covers
over the veggies and let my hens eat the chickweed, then throw
the hens back out to range around the yard. (My veggies are
fenced with 8' tall fishnet, to keep the moose out.)
We have wild camomile growing all over the yard. It's a nice
groundcover. The hens like it. I harvest some to dry for winter
use. I harvest about 8 of the weeds that grow in my yard, for
winter use, for medicinal purposes. (Not stuff I've planted;
the stuff that grows naturally here.)
There are people who say that it's healthy to let weeds grow
in your yard. The weeds run tap roots down and bring minerals up
to the surface. When they die back in the winter, those minerals
I've heard that Native Americans aren't so fussy about weeds.
They know that weeds are okay. The Creator wouldn't have put
them in our gardens if they were all bad. (?)
Bedouin proverb: If you have no troubles, buy a goat.
about how Native Americans lived.
To put to rest the relevance of this myth consider this. Native
Americans, before Europeans arrived with their collection of botanical
delinquents, didn't have to cope with introduced weeds.
'The balance is undone' Joni Mitchell.
Maybe you don't like the taste of it, but I think purslane makes an
excellent salad. I chop up the stems and leaves, maybe some onion, add oil
and vinegar. Unlike many salads, it improves with a little age.
John Henry Wheeler
USDA Zone 7
Any vegetation growing where it is not wanted, is a weed. That is the
definition. I have to say I regard twich or couch grass as the worst
thing I have as I have always had clay soils and it is a biatch to pull
ot from that. And when pulled, you only need a few cells left behind
and it regenerates.
The thing with that is that it has large doses of the hormone used on
cuttings. It is chock full of the vegetable worlds own version of
As for puslane. I had heard of it and though it was called pursilane.
This is what the web has to say on it:
Purslane an heat-tolerant, drought-tolerant flower which ... blooms
from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The smaller blooming "weedy" cousin of the cultivated Dolly Parton
suddenly become the belles of the garden among creative chefs and
Purslane is acclaimed for .. its cooking possibilities--its tinker-toy
eye appeal, crisp texture and lightly tangy taste--and the scientific
discovery of its potentially healthful omega-3 fatty acids.If this
weren't enough, it has above average values of Vitamins A and C and
provides all of these goodies with only 15 calories in a 100-gram
Eaten extensively in soups and salads throughout the Mediterranean,
Russians dry and can it for the winter. In Mexico it is called
VERDOLAGA and is a favorite comfort food, eaten in an omelet or as a
side dish, rolled in tortillas, or dropped by handfuls into soups and
The human body might be able to convert into other, related kinds of
omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) found in fish oils. Researchers see
evidence that these substances lower blood pressure and cholesterol
levels as well as make the blood less likely to form clots. But ages
before this scientific finding, purslane was eaten as treatment for
arthritis, inflammation and heart disease and to promote general good
Purslane is a succulent low-growing plant which is very tasty and
crunchy. The entire plant can be used, the stems being most succulent.
Purslane grows all over the world, often in disturbed soil. Purslane
can be used as the main salad ingredient, lightly seasoned with diced
onion, vinegar, and oil. The plant is good cooked with soups, steamed,
sauteed, or pickled. Add it to omelets.
Purslane sprawls along the ground with its fleshy, succulent, highly
branched stems. The stems are round and tinted red. The flavor of the
raw stems is mild, slightly sour, and the texture is crunchy. The
leaves are paddle-shaped (obovate), flat, and alternately arranged. The
small flowers are yellow, sessile, and contain five two-lobbed petals.
The small seed capsules produce abundant black seeds.
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