To grow or not to grow goutweed has caused great confusion among top veteran horticulturists. Goutweed or bishop’s weed is referred to as ground elder in England. It has got the botanical name meaning “little goat feet,”. It is like those few who have the capacity and strength to run around the garden. They get out of control by means of roots that stroll and roam all over the garden like a little baby’s feet.
What does the gout weed look like?
The appearance of plants help them to be distinctive among the others. Gout weed or little goat feet has a height of 12 inches from the ground. It has got green leaves. These green leaves are further divided into three small parts called leaflets. The flowers of goutweed are white in color. They are leggy and thick and do not look attractive at all. They germinate after self-seeding. Hence their cutting off is a must thing.
Aegopodium are low growing plants having rhizome or bulb at the base. They are basically rhizomatous vegetation but turn into weeds quite often.
Bishop’s Weed’s white flowers sprout out on the stalks. They are a highly recommended plant for ground’s coverage.
Growing the goutweed: Procedure
Goutweed has the tendency to adjust and get familiar with any type of garden soil. So there is nothing specific that is required for it to grow. They are partial-shade loving plants and do very well in the moist shady lawn. They can also thrive well in the sun beams and dampen soil. If the summer scorching heat has tanned the leaves of goutweed brown, they can be trimmed off properly. Fresh and new leaves will sprout back as replacement of the old ones.
Spreading goutweed: the gout weed will propagate on its own in spring by splitting up in spring. They apply the same formula of dividing in the fall.
Benefits of goutweed in your lawn:
Goutweed is not always hostile or unwelcoming in your garden. It gives the ground a great protective cover or vegetation. This gives the benefit of planting over the slopes where ordinary grass or creepers cannot climb. This piece of the vegetation will lead to a new plant. So care should be taken in planting this plant. Be cautious in its identification. It stands out from the others if its characteristics are considered. It is different from other perennials. Goutweed stops growing at a place where there is a solid edging. At that spot it is better to plant a tree. Goutweeds are ideals for ground flooring and covers under the trees and the shrubberies. Goutweed can also be planted in containers and its growth has been observed fine there.
Goutweed related diversities: There are other varieties of the goutweed too. A plant with striking light green leaves with white edges is the variety of goutweed. It is called ‘Variegata‘. This specie is quite wished and desired over the other types of the goutweed.
Botanical name for goutweed: Goutweed’s biological name is Aegopodium podagraria.
How to Cultivate Aegopodium Plants in your Garden?
The other names for the goutweed used commonly are Bishop’s weed, Cow Parsley, Ground elder, snow-on-the-mountains, and Aegopodium(the botanical name).
They characteristically bloom in the month of June.
The best idea to grow your own aegopodium is to acquire the plant from the garden centers. You can also get one from its propagation by division.
01. Spacing between the plants
There should be space of almost 20 to 30 cm between the plants when you are sowing it because they propagate by division. This space becomes almost 8 to 12 inches.
02. Season to grow
It can be grown in any season. You can harvest it in the spring and it will bloom the same if you cultivate in fall.
03. Type of the soil
It can grow in any type of soil easily. So the type does not matter as such. The plant can be planted in dry, wet and even poor soil.
There is no need to water the plant as it gets enough from the soil. It does not require any type of nourishment from other sources than the soil it is dwelling on.
05. Life cycle of Bishop’s weed
Its life cycle can be termed as Hardy perennial. It is a recurrent and lasting plant.
06. Areas of growth
It is mainly grown or produced in west Asian countries. Furthermore it is also widely found in European areas.
It can be grown by division. Other methods to grow it are by burying its rhizome into the targeted soil patch. Third way to grow it is to make it germinate from its seeds.
Bishop’s weed blooms into snow like white flowers in the late spring and continues till early days of the summer.
09. Growing conditions
It should be grown in very restricted conditions. The reason behind this is that it grows quite rapidly like the wildfire spreads out non-stop. It requires heavy shade and light conditioning.
It is easy to grow. It helps to avoid soil erosion by holding the soil tight. Another benefit it has over the other ground floorings is that it grows in those areas where no other vegetation grows. The ancient Romans used its bulb or rhizome as food. They used to eat it like spinach, carrot, parsley and celery. These aforementioned vegetables are closely related to Aegopodium in the family.
Along with benefits it has shortcomings too. It spreads too quickly. If its growth is not properly monitored and maintained it can be a threat to your garden. Furthermore, it causes harm to nature due to its aggressive nature.
When it comes to ending aegopodium, a real challenge begins. It is the evil which if not nipped in the bud can cost you a pretty dime. Pull it out with your hand. If it is too sturdy, dig the bulb out of the soil. The last but not the least is the use of herbicides to stop it from spreading too fast.
Caring for Aegopodium
It is quite convenient to look after Aegopodium. They do not require that much care or constant attention of the gardener. They spread quickly over the garden even if neglected a lot. If you want to have precautionary measures for not letting the plant spread like wildfire, cut its flowers before they get mature enough to produce and spread seeds.
James, the D.I.Y Expert, graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture from Colorado State University. Love writing blog posts and guides to help others learn how to garden!