19 comments on “Dangerous backyard plants.

    • Yep, I was pretty happy too. Mozzie season will be upon us before we know it, the more killed off before they have a chance to breed the better. Especially if they get to feed such a cute plant 🙂

    • Its funny, because the carnivorous plants I have in pots are not too happy right now, they love the heat and thrive in summer.

      These little guys in the garden seem to love the sun though, when they are in sunny positions they are quite red. As soon as the weather starts to dry out the ground they die off. I have tried to get them in pots in the past but they have a really long root and our ground is just clay so it is almost impossible to get such a tiny plant out without doing it damage. I just leave them where they are and wish for a greener thumb!

  1. So these little plants are natives??? God I’d love to have a whole army of them around my tadpole pond to catch all the mozzies that hatch out. Have you tried digging them out while the ground is kind of moist, like now?

    -cough- and if you ever did manage to propagate them I’d be more than happy to adopt a few. 🙂

    • Our whole block is hard-packed clay, almost impossible to get one of these guys out of the ground without killing it first, and believe me I have tried!

      Last year I was thrilled to see a tiny one of the rosette kind had appeared on top of a tall skinny anthill. I dug down miles with a teaspoon to see if I could get the end of its root out gently enough. It only lasted a short time and obviously never recovered from the move. 😦
      I have come to the conclusion that I will have to enjoy them in situ, although if I ever work out a way to get them going you will be the first to know!

      The rosette kind have little groups quite spread out in places, especially under trees where they get a tiny bit of sun but no chance to dry out. They also produce a single lovely flower almost as big as themselves just before they retire for the season.

      • I am genuinely envious! The only thing that seems to grow well in Warrandyte is weeds. Capeweed, thistle, you name it. However I did find a mushroom the other day! I was so thrilled.

        Speaking of plants I just planted out 20 strawberry runners. 10 each of two japanese varieties that are meant to be incredibly sweet. Just hope they survive. Ordered them in from Diggers and then didn’t check my letterbox so they were a wee bit unhappy by the time I finally found them. Fingers crossed.

        • When we first moved in here 15+ years ago the whole block was devoid of anything other than the gum trees up the back and a tattered garden the guy put in to sell the house. Rabbits killed anything that poked its head out of the ground and it took years of selective mowing (and an obviously effective strain of calicivirus) to encourage proper things to grow.

          We started by letting the gumtrees have unmown carpets around them just to give critters a chance to have shelter and slowly the natives started getting stronger and stronger. Nowadays we have nothing that resembles lawn up the back but it is a carpet of tiny native ‘things’, including some things I know are meant to be shrubs but due to repeated mowing have become prostrate groundcovers 🙂 Occasionally the Man will have to go and do a bit of mowing with a chainsaw to get it under control, I never thought that would happen and sometimes I still pull up the driveway and go wow! when I see how green it is on our little hill.

          Soon enough the tiny native orchids will start coming up, they are just beautiful and give my camera a good workout every year!

          Good luck with your strawberries, lucky it was so cold in your letterbox! I wish I could maintain a veg garden but generally meet with miserable failure 😦 Post some photos so we can see their progress (and a pic of the delicious dessert you make with the fruit at the end!)

          • My block was a horse paddock before I bought it and built my house so I know what you mean about the scarcity of life – trees and grass, nothing else. I’ve been building shallow terraces for about 7 years to stop soil erosion and to trap the rain instead of letting it run down hill so quickly.

            Planting has to be in raised terraces with fencing around them or the alpacas will ‘mow’ everything down in five minutes.

            My vegie patch is quite small and doubles as a resting place for 4 of my beloved furkids – each marked with a rose bush – but it’s starting to become productive so I’ll definitely take some pics.

          • Terraces are a good idea, since we had no actual soil we used to leave heavy branches that had fallen from the trees in positions to catch runoff and hold back any vegetable matter.

            Alpacas would make it doubly hard for natives to get up and going, I get annoyed with the dog when she stomps on something special, at least she doesn’t actually eat them!

            The last dog used to pull flowers off things, it made me so mad to see the little orchids smashed before they had a chance to finish their season. This will be the first season since he has gone and I am really hoping he didn’t do any irreversible damage to the cycle. I have noticed in the last few days some tiny spears showing themselves through the moss so I am hopeful that they will still come back.

            The MIL has a great veg garden and hers also doubles as a cemetery, maybe those special feelings you have for that area is the secret ingredient to success!

          • Oh I hope your little orchids have survived!

            Actually the alpacas seem to prefer exotics and make a bee-line for my fruit trees and roses. I really must take some photos to show my alpaca proofing.

            I’ll be honest, I don’t know what is working in my vegie patch but all the roses are doing beautifully and… so is my garlic, which is strange because until last year I’d never had any luck growing garlic.

          • I do too. The only hope I have if he did wipe them out is that the neighbours on both sides have no idea what mowers are for and no idea what grows in their gardens. It shouldn’t take too long for the seeds to make their way from their plants to the nicer conditions on our side of the fence.

            I regularly have a surreptitious inspection through the wire and if I see a new face I extend an invitation. No, I don’t sneak over with a spade, I just let them know they will be appreciated here. 😉 Generally it only takes one season for something that was previously unseen here to start being a regular.

          • -giggles- I was just picturing you as a garden guerrilla, sneaking over the fence in the dead of night, recruiting for the revolution! Che Metan :p

            Sadly the only immigrants I’ve discovered from next door are some clumps of buffalo grass. Hate the stuff but you just can’t get rid of it without spraying and I hate spraying so, to keep with my theme… we’re at a mexican standoff.

          • It is tempting to go over there and kidnap some of them, but I think that those shovel holes in the ground might give me away to the neighbours fairly quickly 😉

  2. Gorgeous! It’s dressed to attract company for dinner… LOL
    Now, if you have knowledge of plant life that I could use in a mystery — something outside the usual arsenal of murderous poisons, do tell.

    • They are so delicate looking for a killer aren’t they? I wonder what they smell like to the insects? It must be quite delicious for them to be so successful at attracting those tasty snacks.
      At the end of their season the end up with a pretty spray of small flowers at the top too. I don’t know too much about strange and unusual methods of destruction that other plants have, but I will let you know if I find out anything exciting 🙂

    • I’m so glad you liked them 🙂

      I hate it when the kids and the dog go rampaging around the backyard, I just have to pretend it isn’t happening and look away. I can’t really ban them from their own garden when there is something I like growing out there otherwise they would never be allowed to play!

      Even though the sundews seem fragile they are obviously quite robust or they would be long gone by now, every year they come back up just as strongly as they were before the kids or dog arrived (which makes me very happy).

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