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Monster weed



  • I agree it's concerning that it's not flowered yet if it's to be an annual. Even my most tortured annuals have managed something. I don't like to think I may have to keep it another year or so before I can know what it is though! Next year I shall not let weeds get my interest!

    The stem is indeed very solid and bumpy lower down, which I assume is where roots would come out were they nearer the ground.

    I thought it came from the bird seed, as this plant is near to a bird table and all around the base of the table there are what appear to be seedlings of it. I hoe them down frequently, but unfortunately this giant fellow got itself under a cloche and was quite large before I found it, so I don't know for sure it's the same, though it seems likely enough.

    The leaves look right for the Himalayan balsam, so I shall have a look through other Impatiens and see if there's another giant that might fit the bill. If only it were Impatiens niamniamensis!

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,160

    I should think something out of the bird seed is very likely and not likely to be any sort of impatiens.The first pic didn't say HB to me and the later ones even less so.

  • waterbuttswaterbutts Posts: 1,214

    I don't remember Indian Balsam being at all prickly, so no.

    Bird seed, once again, the culprit, I think.image

  • I've looked through the ingredients lists on the bird seed packets and all of them are very much not seeds that would grow into this plant. They are all grass type seeds or sunflower seeds.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,160

    what does it feel like Panoply? if you runyour hand over the leaves. Smooth or rough?.


  • patty3patty3 Posts: 129

    I like your mysterious plant .

    not balsam or knotweed ?

    so it could be a gift of a dropped seed from a bird poo

    ( eaten elswhere)    so continue to watch for a flower

    It may be a new  plant we will all want , and make you a fortune!!!

  • No signs of it spreading underground so I'm comfortable it's not a knotweed.

    Glad someone likes it Patty3! I never thought it'd get this big or last so long unidentified. Was sure it'd have flowered by now. Alas.

    The leaves are slightly shiny and smooth nutcutlet. No hairs that I can notice on either side.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,160

    I keep coming back to this one Panoply, I don't like to be beaten. 

    I haven't got there yet though

  • It is very annoying to not know what it is, especially since it's taking up so much space, and looks like it's gonna hang around forever until I lose patience with it!

    I walked alongside the river today and took note of the patches of Himalayan Balsam, and my monster weed is definitely not one of them. They're all in bloom and have far fewer leaves, and smaller ones, and the stem is solid or striped red. And well remembered nutcutlet, the leaves often had a red midrib.

  • I have an update on my monster weed. It reached around 8 or 9 feet and then perished in the frost the other night. I cut its branches off and dug it up the other day, so can show you a picture of its root system - very shallow considering its size.

    It had begun to develop flower buds, but these never opened. I did noticed however, that what seemed to be the same plant, growing in a container I used to cause my radishes to bolt, had developed a flower several weeks ago. I am not sure this is the same plant, but it has the same shape to its leaves, albeit in miniature, and the same colour and pattern to the stem - red at the bottom spreading upwards. I had hoped it would set seed, but it too was killed in the frost, and the flower head I rescued has thin beige husks within, which aren't hugely helpful I fear.

    To add further confusion to the mystery, another monster weed developed alongside the original, and also on the other side of the house. It seemed alike in every way, except it had very furry leaves - you could really feel the bristles catch on your skin when you touched it. It developed several tiny flower buds on each branch, that were due to be yellow I'm sure, but they also were frosted before opening.

    Here are the photos - any ideas what this intruder could be?







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