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15 messages
19/10/2013 at 12:14

Hi There,

I am new to the site.  Can anyone help me identify and get rid of this weed?  I live in central London and the garden was very overgrown when I moved in.  I have been battling with this weed ever since I moved in for the last 2 years.  I think the soil must be full of its seed.  I have tried pulling them up, forking and hoe-ing the soil and round-up.  

I tackle them once a week, but allowed one to grow old for these photos below.

Any advice?



19/10/2013 at 17:19

Hi muddy, I almost recognise this but can't quite get there. Is it easy to pull up with all roots intact or do bits stay in the ground and carry on growing? It looks more like an annual to me in which case the answer is more pulling and/or hoeing. Some weeds seeds last for years. It's stinging nettles for me


19/10/2013 at 19:30

I can't quite place it either, Nut.  Initially I thought it might be on of the willowherbs, but it also looks a bit like some kind of campanula.  If those little blobs are tiny flowers (tricky to see in the photos),  could it be redshank?  That one can be a bit variable in form.

19/10/2013 at 19:45

I'll look in my wildflower/weed book tomorrow. I need good light to see properly.

19/10/2013 at 21:07

The only thing that keeps coming back to me is Dog's Mercury, but it doesn't look quite right 

19/10/2013 at 21:29

I think I get this one - and I call it a willow herb (and think a gardening friend told me that) - but it might not be - gets tiny pink flowers? (It isn't rosebay willowherb - and I also get another willowherb that is a short -15cm tall - single stem with red tinged leaves- also pink flowers)

Doesn't worry me too much cos it is easy to pull out - and if it a willowherb is it might not be seeds in the soil - I've religiously pulled my 'willowherb' out before it sets seed for years but it comes back - think the seeds (which are like dandelion) travel easily ...


19/10/2013 at 21:32

I recognise it as well, I thought it was a willowherb

19/10/2013 at 21:35

Should have said I recognise that as a seedling too....and I know I can pull them all out and without turning the soil etc a new batch can appear - pull them out and more appear - why I think they are travelling rather than in the soil ...

21/10/2013 at 15:19

Hi Lusi83. Don't recognise it - "my" weeds are Herb Robert, chickweed and Hairy Bittercress. The seeds for your weeds are probably being brought in on the wind from some untended land nearby. But there might also be lots in the soil from before you arrived, and whenever you turn the soil, you expose them to light and they germinate. When I moved in my (untended London) garden was full of weeds and not much else. In the Autumn, I put down a mulch to improve the soil, put newspaper on top of that and bark to hide that. Might be worth a try? The newspaper will prevent annual seeds in the soil germinating and gradually rots away. It seemed to keep weeds in check - but I still get them blowing in!

21/10/2013 at 16:22

Iwas going to look this one up in the book and now it's nearly dark again and I can't see

21/10/2013 at 16:37

Hello, I have that regularly growing in my garden too. Don't know it's name. I don't think there is a long term solution, except to pull it up or hoe over every time that you see it growing. 

My neighbour has a bit of an unkempt garden and the wild seeds probably just fly over the fence all the time and land in my nice soil 

21/10/2013 at 16:45

Someone here put up this link a while ago, it might help. Although some of the weeds mentioned I grow as flowers


21/10/2013 at 16:55

I thought the definition of a weed was," a plant growning in the wrong place." 

21/10/2013 at 16:59

That it is, I must have loads growing in the right place

22/10/2013 at 11:18

The third one looks like a spurge seedling. I have not got my specs with me so am sat a mile from the computer so can't really say for sure about the other though I don't hink it's Willowherb, Epilobium, it's too branching and the veins are too deep set, but I'm specless so it also looks like basil.

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