Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Can You Tame This Goose?

Ah, what a pretty gaggle of garden geese..


  I am, of course, referring to Gooseneck Loosestrife, that plant whose flowers are named for.. well, you can see for yourself!

Does it resemble a goose's neck?
This plant has a long bloom time, is easy to grow, and has received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.  Not to mention, the bees seem to like it.


Sounds like the perfect plant, right?


Except for one teensy, itty-bitty problem...

Gooseneck Loosestrife - a lot of it
Scratch that, make that an expansively BIG problem!
Gooseneck Loosestrife is so easy to grow, that it tends to take over!

Good thing that wall is there to stop this goose invasion!
Native to China and Japan and hardy from zones 3 - 8, this perennial is vigorous to the point of invasiveness.  Spreading both by seeds and by underground runners, Gooseneck Loosestrife is most invasive in loves sunny, moist soil, but it's not picky, tolerating a good number of growing conditions.  (Hey, maybe I should have planted this when I lived in North Carolina!  It can even tolerate heavy clay!)

Here Gooseneck Loosestrife is duking it out with pink-flowered Rose Campion, also known to be an enthusiastic grower.  I think you can see which one is winning..
If you are thinking about planting this beautiful flower, just beware - you might want to place it in a more challenging site to slow it down.  Like a dry, shady spot or heavy clay.  
Or in a container.


I think here in Massachusetts, I will just enjoy it in the neighbor's yard.  
I don't want even these gorgeous geese running amok!

18 comments:

  1. Wow, it certainly is pretty and it certainly does look like a goose's neck! I thought maybe it might be related to Purple Loosestrife which is a non-native invasive. But it looks like they're from totally different families. I think I've seen this one around here, too. I won't be planting it, but it is lovely!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With the nickname of 'Loosestrife', I automatically think to be careful! I don't think this is nearly as invasive as purple loosestrife, though, thankfully. And that is true, they are from different families.

      Delete
  2. Indie, good warning about this plant. Yes, it is very pretty; I noticed it growing around a mailbox this week while we were out driving around. But the invasive nature is almost scary, isn't it? I could just imagine years of trying to eradicate it from the garden, oh, what a lot of work that would be. Better to admire it from afar.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If I had lots of heavy clay like my last garden, I'd probably grow it, since it's hard to get far in that stuff! Not in decent soil though!

      Delete
  3. It is beautiful - but it looks like it wants a lot of space to stretch its legs. I will admire your neighbour's plant from this side of the pond.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It looks beautiful en masse, but I think I'll let our neighbor keep them. I have too many other plants I need to fit in my garden! :)

      Delete
  4. I always admire this plant when I see it in gardens but would never put it in mine because of the invasive factor! The pollinators do seem to love it too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is very pretty, but, yeah, I don't want to take the chance of it taking over!

      Delete
  5. I remember seeing this in an in-law's garden on Long Island and thinking, be careful! Yet there it was plentiful but not obnoxious. I wonder if sandy soil slows it down a bit, since it's drier.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's supposed to like sites that are more moist, so sandy soil would be a better choice to slow it down. I feel like heavy clay would work, as well, though!

      Delete
  6. If it's in the neighbor's yard, better guard the borders!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thankfully, it's across the street! Hopefully, it can't jump asphalt...

      Delete
  7. Yet another beauty that can get out of control, as your photos show. Thanks for the warning!
    I bought this plant once at the local Hort Society's Plant Sale and they warned me to plant it pot and all. I did and it never did run amok. But then during one of the drought years, it just disappeared.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I also love the look of it in drifts when I see it in pictures, but would not plant it because it is invasive in nature. I don't see it around here much.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have only heard about purple Loosestrife, but it can be a bit invasive too if you don't deadhead it and let the seeds go everywhere. It is a beautiful plant though, for those with space enough :-)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Having fought long, protracted battles with unwanted plants, I just sort of feel tired looking at all those lovely goosenecks! I prefer my garden flowers better behaved!

    ReplyDelete
  11. So am I your only reader with Gooseneck Loosestrife in her garden? I grow it in heavy clay soil so its not too bad. Every spring, when it first appears, I pull out any that is imposing on other plants -- it pulls out easily (not like shasta daisy that is aggressive and very difficult to remove). I have two drifts of Gooseneck Loosestrife and feel it is a beautiful addition to my garden. Your pictures are lovely! P. x

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have never seen this plant. Your photos make it look so attractive that it might be invading more gardens soon.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...