Bobberman
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I am sure there are weeds that make a garden better!

Does anyone have a favorite weed that aids a certain vegetable? Some weeks attract certain birds that may eat a bug that is hurting your plants! Some weeds bring up minerals from very deep like dandylines! Some young weeds are great for compost! Are we distroying some weeds that are really good in our garden? Some herbs are really weeds that are of some value! The smell of a certain weed may deter a bug or animal!
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nickolas
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I really like comfrey and nettles, comfrey because the flowers attract bees, it is a dynamic accumulator, it is a good compost activator, it is a good green feed for the chook’s, the worms in my worm farm love to eat the cut up leaves and it makes a very good organic liquid fertiliser.
Nettles because, I use nettles in my compost piles, I feed it to my worms, I feed it to my chooks, it makes a very good organic liquid fertiliser, and lastly I put a 2-6 inch layer of nettles on the bottom of my lasagna veggie beds, and it makes a very nutritious herbal tea for humans.
That is all I can think of off the top of my head about comfrey and nettle so that is why I like them.
there are also many other plants that are considered weed’s that I like and use a lot but they are to numerous to name.

There is a quote that I like that I got off some one at helpful gardener,
weeds are just plants that have mastered every survival skill except for growing in straight neat rows.

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rainbowgardener
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beneficial weeds

Clover is a nitrogen fixer and bees love the flowers. Anything fragrant, like wild onion, makes it harder for pest insects to find your crop plant (regular onions and garlic and herbs do the same thing, but you asked about weeds). Some weeds act as trap crops, like wild grape vine for japanese beetles, velvet leaf for leaf miners. Purslane is a lovely edible weed that works as a living mulch covering the soil, helps break up the soil and bring up nutrients.


Wiki has a nice article about beneficial weeds:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beneficial_weed

and the article has a link to this cool chart:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_beneficial_weeds
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Bobberman
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Thanks Rainbow that is a very nice link and very informative. Everyone should read it! Anything that benifits tomatoes I am for!
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DeborahL
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Are chooks chickens?
I love dandelions only because I pick them for my little boys (who just happen to be rabbits).
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Artemesia
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Beneficial weeds

I never put comfrey, nettle, or dandelion inside the garden since their roots are so invasive. I do however plant them all around the garden. The weedy beneficials I tend to just plant around the garden; Yarrow, Tansy, Grass-leaved Goldentop (Euthamia sp.), Goldenrod, Orange stonecrop, Alfalfa, Daisy, Golden Marguerite, Thyme, Candytuft, Cinquefoil, White Clover, Sweet Clover, Dandelion, Sweet Fennel.

Another thing I have learned to do is look around the fields in my area. Look to see which weeds grow native in your area and attract beneficial insects. Then I just collect seeds or dig roots in the winter. That is how I found Goldentop, which is an amazing beneficial insect attractor.

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PunkRotten
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So is Yarrow really invasive and not recommended inside a garden?

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rainbowgardener
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I'm not sure that's how Artemesia meant that. Nettle, comfrey, dandelion were the invasive ones.

I actually have trouble keeping comfrey alive in my crowded shady garden and I don't find yarrow invasive even in a sunnier, but still crowded spot.
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DoubleDogFarm
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DeborahL wrote:Are chooks chickens?
I love dandelions only because I pick them for my little boys (who just happen to be rabbits).
Yes, Australian or New Zealand slang

Eric

DeborahL
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Thanks, Eric.
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jal_ut
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Does anyone have a favorite weed that aids a certain vegetable?
NO! A weed is a weed, get rid of it. Compost!!!
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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soil
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but if you like it, its not a weed anymore. :lol:
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

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jal_ut
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Good point soil.

A weed is a plant out of place. IOW if its growing where you don't want it, its a weed. Take black nightshade, if its growing over in the next county its black nightshade, if its growing in my garden its a noxious weed. :) I don't want it in my garden. For one thing, it competes with my chosen plants, for another it is susceptible to all the diseases that often inflict the nightshade family, i.e. potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes, tomatillos and peppers. It would be well with me if it stayed over in the next county.

This is an extreme example, but all of the weeds compete vigorously with your garden plants for water, sunshine and soil nutrients. For me it is best to pull them when small and just leave them on the soil for mulch. Believe me, your chosen plants will do much better if the weeds are killed.

Purslane is a pain in the toosh. You can't leave it for mulch, but must toss it in the garbage can. If left in the garden, pretty soon that is all you have growing. I will not tolerate it in my garden.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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PunkRotten
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How about Yarrow? Is it a really aggressive spreading plant? Is it a no-no to put inside a garden? I want to use some to attract certain insects.

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rainbowgardener
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rainbowgardener wrote:I'm not sure that's how Artemesia meant that. Nettle, comfrey, dandelion were the invasive ones.

I actually have trouble keeping comfrey alive in my crowded shady garden and I don't find yarrow invasive even in a sunnier, but still crowded spot.
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Artemesia
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Yarrow

Believe it or not, in many temperate climates yarrow can become naturalized and survive in fields on it's own. I never plant any perennial inside the garden since the garden is for annuals and I do not want to rotate around them. Some of the plants I listed are not as weedy as others so you can take your chances if you only have a perennial garden. It depends on your climate.



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