Garlic mustard

Eat this!

It’s Earth Day again, so let me tell you about some really great mustard! I love this stuff!

Um, what? OK, this really is some great mustard, but the product itself doesn’t have anything to do with the environment. The name, however, is a different story. In addition to being a great taste-combination, garlic mustard is an invasive plant, and it’s probably taking over a nature trail, roadside ditch, patch of forest or backyard near you.

Why should you care? Because garlic mustard takes over areas where it grows, choking out natives flowers and plants — actually killing them with its poisonous roots. So where once there may have been hepatica, spring beauties, May apple, bloodroot and trillium blooming in the early spring, now there is only garlic mustard. It’s a real threat, and it spreads like wildfire.

Pull this!

The good news is, it’s easy to identify and quite easy to pull, especially the day after a good rain. So make yourself a good, hearty sandwich (with plenty of mustard if you like), then head out and do something good for the planet. Once you know what to look for, you will see this noxious weed everywhere. It’s most effective to pull the plant before the flowers turn to seed; in southeast Michigan, today is a perfect day for a Garlic Mustard Pull. Plants are often in flower until about late May. A single plant can produce thousands of seeds, so even pulling a few plants makes a difference!

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Published in: on April 22, 2012 at 10:20 am  Leave a Comment  
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