Wednesday, May 29, 2013
The not so ugly truth about weeds.
Well, I am ready to make a not-so-popular declaration. Weeds really are not all that bad. In fact, having a few weeds in good. Weed free is really not so good.
Have you ever noticed, when God plants a garden, when planting environments are allowed to grow up naturally, lots of different kinds of plants grow together. Think of a meadow. Grasses, wildflowers and "weeds" all grow together. You see, this is actually a very healthy plant environment. It is the way God intended it. As a result of all of these plants being mixed together, they are healthier, because the plants support one another. A deep rooted plant, such as dandelion, reaches down to the nutrients that the shallower plants can't reach, and brings that nutrients closer to the surface.
That being said, I do realize there are times when weeds do need to be removed. Spending thousands of dollars on a patio or driveway is a good reason to kill the grass growing up through the pavers. Pulling the grass that is growing under the tomatoes is wise, because tomatoes won't grow well with another plant smothering their "feet".
The problem with today's culture is that there is an idea that every weed needs to be removed. Instead of using harmful chemicals to treat the entire yard, simply spray the one large patch of violets and embrace the rest. Violets really are beautiful and edible. Harvest them instead of killing them. Instead of spending hours digging every single dandelion from the yard, dig a few and have the kids harvest the rest. Your vegetable garden does not need to be weed free to produce an abundance of veggies. More than once I have had someone comment on my beautiful weeds in my veggie patch. I love growing a large garden, but I have 2 small children and I refuse to spend their entire childhood pulling weeds. Despite my "lack" of "good gardening technique" I always have an abundant harvest and I rarely have problems with insect infestation.
So, there you have it. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, sit back and relax. Say a little prayer thanking the Creator for that little patch of clover, which has helped feed the grass with it's long roots and attract the little bee that has helped to pollinate your apple tree. And, if a well meaning friend gasps and says to you, "My husband would die if he saw all of those weeds in your garden!", just smile and tell her you are practicing an amazing new companion planting technique.