Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Weed or Not a Weed?

Coming from England, I don't really know much about Australian plants except if it's a native, you're probably ok to stick it in your garden. Having it's own unique eco-system over here means that if you plant the right things it encourages the right insects and wildlife and you don't accidentally wipe out a species of butterfly or tempt a family of cane toads to take up residence in your water-feature. It would all be so easy if I could tell by looking which was a weed or a non-native. 
This one's not a weed, by the way. It is a nice well-behaved substitute for an Umbrella Tree... which is a naughty weed.


Brissse said...


Mrs Santa said...

No Cara.
The Umbrella tree is not really a weed; it is a a native of North Queensland; a weed is usually defined as a plant in the "wrong" place, we humans define "wrong"- that is the potential to become a nuisance to us or the environment where it may be growing.
Natives can be as weedy as any other plant; the crux is that any plant out of its element can behave differently - it could die - or it may really really flourish and spread and therefore become a "weed".
Umbrella trees are just part of the scenery in the North Qld rain forest - where there are no sewerage pipes to invade to quench their tropical thirst.
Thanks for letting me ride my hobby horse.

cara said...

So is it ok to say it's a weed if it's in my back garden?

ps hobby horse rides encouraged.

Mrs Santa said...

but you should blame the human who put it there - not the poor ol' plant!

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