Right Place for a Weed

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So I grumbled a lot about star of Bethlehem last week (thanks for all your comments!), but on a happier note there's one "weed" in my yard that I absolutely love. I think some of you may agree with me and some may disagree. I would love to hear your comments either way!

sedum acre

Sedum acre. Maybe because my first horticultural love was cacti and other succulents. I had a great collection through high school and college, but when I got married and we moved to an apartment with little space and less sun, I sent most of them to live in my father's office. (Where they are doing very well. Go, Dad!) Our current home, a house of our own, could host some potted cacti . . . but (1) they aren't toddler proof and (2) between said toddler, work, household chores and outdoor, in-ground garden (at last!) I don't really have the time nor inclination to be messing around with cacti—inventing ways to repot them without getting prickled, dusting between their spines with watercolor paintbrushes, convincing people they weren't all the same and all the other sorts of crazy things I somehow used to have time for when I wasn't knitting bookmarks and miniature birds. Wow, this post has dissolved into a tangent on my past strange bachelorette hobbies!

Back to Sedum acre. Imagine my delight when I found, in my New England homestead, a succulent growing in the yard! In several places! The best place is our front rock wall, which keeps our front yard from falling onto the sidewalk. The sedum spills over it and crawls through its crevices, softening the look of the stone with such a friendly green. In the spring, it glows with yellow flowers that I think will look lovely with the salvia I planted last year. I'm just waiting for the sun to come out so I can see!

Sedum acre also grows in parts of our front lawn, and I also find it enjoyable there. We have some out back, as well, but the back yard is extremely shady, so the sedum tends to get—well, we usually say "leggy" when plants stretch for the sun, but with such a short, creeping plant like this I would call it "necky." This year I transplanted some of the backyard crop to my front garden, beneath some new shrubs, where I hope it will form a good groundcover. I have every reason to believe it will, given the vigor it has shown throughout the yard. The transplants—which completely confused my husband ("Now what are you doing?")—are doing great, especially considering how I ripped them up, walked through the yard with them in my hand, plunked them down and walked away. (There is a right and a not-so-great way to do things. I admit that in my own garden I often tend to do the latter, or else it just isn't going to get done at all.)

If you're still with me and waiting for the part when I tell you about my favorite weed, I already did. It's Sedum acre. I know I'm not the only one who loves it; I know it's sold and there are even named selections. But it is also considered a weed by many. It's native to Europe; it has naturalized in much of North America. It spreads, mainly by stolons, and pieces that break loose will root themselves. For me, in our nearly two years here, it hasn't been a "nuisance" spreader, and that's not just because I like it. It's really not spreading quickly or aggressively out of its spaces. I know that in other areas of the country, or even in my own region but under different conditions, it may drive people nuts.

I'd love to hear from anyone who loves S. acre or hates it, and where you are.

Or, what are some other "weeds" in your garden that you're happy to live with?

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