Strangely I’m finding that cataloging the toxic weeds in the yard is therapeutic. I’m slowly getting around to pulling all of them, but there are just so many methods for them appearing in the yard that it’s really a matter of keeping on top of it every day. Oddly enough, I strongly suspect that the elk are the main distributors, despite the fact that some of these plants are toxic even to them. It’s almost as though they eat everything in sight even if it makes them sick. But then again they are elk, and are not known for being smarter than your average bear.
Today’s highlighted plant is tansy ragwort. Somehow this managed to show up as one plant and within three years it’s everywhere. Eradicating this pest is one of my goals for this summer, which is the best excuse I found for getting myself a hori hori. The plant has to be fully pulled from the ground or it just resprouts. I’m hoping that chopping it just below the node will be sufficient to kill it as the root systems spread wide and will end up pulling a lot of the surrounding ground cover if I have to pull each plant fully. They’re pretty enough to look at that I would leave them in place except that they’re actually toxic and will cause liver damage to ruminants. As I have one cat that would fit that description, out it comes.