Pen­du­lous sedge

The Daily Telegraph - Gardening - - Down To Earth -

plant that has been around since the di­nosaurs. The best way to con­trol horse­tail is the same as for Ja­panese knotweed – keep knock­ing it back so that it grad­u­ally weak­ens.

Carex pen­dula is a self-seed­ing na­tive that is quick to colonise. It has small roots for a plant that grows as big as it does, which makes it easy to pull or dig out. It is a prob­lem for gardeners be­cause, un­like most sedges, it grows well in dry con­di­tions. Re­move it be­fore it spreads.

( Ox­alis cor­nic­u­lata) is guar­an­teed to in­fu­ri­ate be­cause it is tiny yet must be dug out or the fleshy tuber­ous roots will per­sist. It spreads like wild­fire and is just as happy among the shoots of a pot­ted peren­nial plant as it is in open soil. The last word should go to

which, down the years, has taken on the Bri­tish land­scape in style. The scourge of hill and dale, it is a defin­ing men­ace that shows what can hap­pen if per­sua­sive weeds are al­lowed to take over.

Head gar­dener of Lowther Cas­tle and Gar­dens Martin Ogle says that R. pon­ticum is the one se­ri­ous weed that he has had to con­trol. Years of grub­bing out the stumps by hand and ma­chine has proved ef­fec­tive.

This is the case for all per­sis­tent weeds: keep re­mov­ing them and you will weaken them, and where pos­si­ble in­ter­cept them be­fore they can set seed. Good luck.

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