Sunday, June 12, 2011


"Mom, those flowers are so pretty!" I said as I looked at the small white funnel shaped flowers scattered through the grass. "Can we grow those in our lawn?"

"Don't let your dad hear you say that."

I couldn't believe it. Who wouldn't want pretty little flowers in their lawn? Mom went on to explain that those pretty flowers were morning glory...long time nemesis of the farmer.

Morning glory, or more specifically, field bindweed, reproduces through seeds and extensive root growth. A study done in Kansas concluded that a single plant six months after germination can produce 197 vertical roots, each at least 4 feet long for a total of 788 feet. Plants can have over 34 horizontal underground roots coming from the tap root, averaging 4 feet in length giving the plant 136 additional feet of growth. These 34 roots can produce 141 new shoots which establish as individual plants.

The best defense against morning glory....don't ever let it get started.

I know this to be true, I've known it since I was that little girl in awe of those pretty white flowers. And yet, here I am, my own soil choked by the weed. This wasn't my land when the first seed sprouted or the aggressive roots crossed the property line, but I bought it anyway. Its tree lined field, water rights and shady front yard wooed me into a commitment I don't regret.

So I dig out the stringy roots patch by patch claiming what is mine and ignoring what I can't control. I imagine the white root tangles are getting weaker, that my super human weed digging skills are too much for this strangling beast that so often wins.

But maybe...

my view is skewed from too much time in the dirt.

1 comment:

  1. My unproven theory is that the core of the earth is really made up of morning glory....and you think we need to worry about volcanoes...the slow ever growing, mass producing, tangled web of morning glory should really be more feared!


Please share your expressions!

Related Posts with Thumbnails