I kind of enjoy the pulling the well-behaved weeds. Those are the ones that, once you get a good grip on them, have the decency to give up and come out, roots and all. They are satisfying, if not actually fun, to pull.

The weeds I hate are the ones that just silently snicker and snap off when you pull them. You just know they will be re-sprouting as soon as your back is turned.

Quack grass, for example. I hate that stuff. It keeps encroaching on all of my garden spaces and it has to be beaten back periodically. I have to use a garden fork to seriously loosen the soil to have even half a chance of pulling enough roots out to slow it down. Clumps of it are in my lawn and grow five times faster than regular grass, so two days after it’s mowed, the lawn looks like it is studded with small green porcupines.

Bladder Campion

Bladder Campion

But I think I hate bladder campion even more. It has big old tap roots that go down to China, and no matter how carefully and deeply I dig, when I pull them out and look at the end of the root, there is always a little piece missing. I’m sure that, even as I’m cursing at it, that little left-behind root piece is already sending up a new stem through the wide open channel and whistling a happy tune. Grrrrrrrrr.

If I sound a little worked up, it’s probably because I did spend some time today fighting those very weeds. I fought the good fight and gained some ground, but I know that those nasty little beggars are plotting against me, even as I type.

New blessing for gardeners:  May all your weeds have strong tops and shallow roots.