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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Gloucester, Virginia
    Posts
    149

    Default Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Our garden was recently weeded. What was once a dense plush bed of greenery and blooms is now irritatingly neat rows of cultivated flowers with naked soil between them. The weeder (we shall call her Bob) was very unhappy that I let the garden get to this state. I looked at the piles of bull thistle, buttercups, dandelions, and wood sorrel she yanked out of the garden and looked at her with curiosity.






    "Aren't those flowers too?" I ask. No, says Bob those are WEEDS. "But the weeds have flowers on them?" She looked at me like I was someone who needed assistance eating oatmeal. To me any plant that produces a flower is welcome in a flower bed. I like it to look wild, verdant, an explosion of life, as if God planted it and not Bob.






    Why I wonder are weeds so hated and despised? For example if I am a few days late mowing my yard it erupts in buttercups and dandelions with whole continents of clover flowers. It is a magnificent example of biodiversity and natures splendor. Bob seeks monoculture, just green grass as far as the eye can see uninterrupted blades. If I wait a month to mow burdock, lambs quarters, and occasionally a mighty thistle will shoot skyward.






    I ask myself who is stranger, me or Bob? Bob seeks to make the yard like the carpet in the living room. The flower bed a series of neat rows like a corn field. She will pull and poison and wage war on any organism that disrupts the order of her universe.






    For example Bob dislikes my beehive. In fact I learn that not only are honey bees vermin but the wood borer bees that are zooming around the summer sky like harrier jets are repellent to her. The bald face wasp, the yellow Jacket, the fuzzy harmless Bumble Bee, all is considered pests to be destroyed.






    How can this Bob woman profess to like flowers but not bees? The only reason flowers exist is to attract pollinators to assist them in reproduction. If the world was without bees it would eventually be without flowers. It would also be without most fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Our diet would exist of mostly cereal grains and corn. Gone would be apples, pears, strawberries, almonds, oranges, limes, lemons, black berries, raspberries, blueberries, tomatoes, cucumbers, pumpkins, and watermelon.






    God put the weeds on the Earth because they are a vital link in the circle of life. Often they are the only source of nutrition for bees between nectar flows. Monoculture is death. If you plant only one type of plant, corn let's say, you will have to dump chemicals on it to keep it alive. It would get picked clean and die otherwise. Old world farmers understood this. They often used to employ tricks like letting the bean stalks climb around the corn stalks. The beans use the corn as a trellis. They alternated rows of potatoes, and carrots, and cucumbers, and tomatoes. This is biodiversity. A garden like this will be fruitful and grow with minimum human or chemical intervention. It would be a benefit to not only mankind but all of God's creatures.






    A lot of people don't know this but most 'weeds' are completely edible. I have watched gardens fail and produce nothing and if you just turn your head slightly you can see a pile of 'weeds' the gardener yanked out and threw away that was full of things to eat. I once ate a salad at a high end restaurant and it was one of the best salads I had ever had. I looked closer and mixed among the romaine lettuce were tender dandelion leaves. We paid good money to be served those "weeds".






    If you plant vegetables and flowers, you have to water them, weed them, and kill insects with poisons. If you don't, supposedly they will die. Maybe, maybe not, but everybody seems to think so. However weeds grow without mans intervention, often in spite of mans intervention. Weeds find life in cracks in the sidewalk. They survive and even thrive despite repeated attacks from the gas mower.






    So, Bob if you are out there reading this. Your ways are the ways of death and destruction. Your ways will lead to the catastrophic loss of life on Earth. Your ways are a sin against God's creation for which we are stewards. I will speak out for the weeds; they have as much a right to live as you do Bob. They are arguably contributing more than you are. While I am at it I will speak out for the pests too. The buzzing insects that ignore you and you seem to fear and loath. It is no wonder God gave them stingers because he knew in his wisdom that someday arrogant and ignorant humans would try to eradicate them.






    I choose life, for me, for my children and someday grandchildren, for all the inhabitants on this rare gem called Earth.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,230

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    We may be the only species who has words and defines their meaning. Weeds, like pests in relationship to animals, are plants where we humans don't want them. Unwanted plants. Without them where would we be? Especially beekeepers. Bees work flowers which are beneficial to them. They don't care if they are weeds or not. But, you may have chosen to live w/ Bob. You can always requeen. Pull your own weeds.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Gloucester, Virginia
    Posts
    149

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Just to clarify Bob is not my better half, more like a landlord.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Kingsville, OH
    Posts
    959

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    A weed is merely a plant growing where it is not supposed to.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Arlee MT USA
    Posts
    548

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Here in MT our main flow comes from Knapweed, an invasion species that most people are trying very hard (and unsuccessfully) to eradicate. I don't know what we'd do if anyone ever figured out how to kill it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Seattle, WA, USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beeophyte View Post
    So, Bob if you are out there reading this. Your ways are the ways of death and destruction. Your ways will lead to the catastrophic loss of life on Earth. Your ways are a sin against God's creation for which we are stewards.
    OT OT OT. Please refrain from making ad hominem attacks and religious themes. Abbé Warré was a true man of God, not a pretender, so I guess he'd counsel you to forgive someone's offensive or wayward ways. Nature itself culls and kills off cells, bees, weeds--who are you to publicly curse someone in this way?

    Jeez... where's a moderator when you need one?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Gloucester, Virginia
    Posts
    149

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    The moderator may lock this thread if they wish, it wont' hurt my feelings. Great respect to you Mr. Templeton.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    western Yakima county, WA, USA
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Thread with same OP locked on biobees yesterday. I didn't view the OP as an attack, certainly much tamer than some of the items on beesource. The G-word seems to be a hot topic over there on biobees.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Gloucester, Virginia
    Posts
    149

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Yes I noticed. Where I live (Bible Belt) we talk about God all the time so it didn't occur to me that others might find it offensive. I wrote my original post from the heart so I stand by what I say, let the chips fall where they may.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baker Oregon
    Posts
    2,367

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beeophyte View Post
    Your ways are the ways of death and destruction. Your ways will lead to the catastrophic loss of life on Earth. Your ways are a sin against God's creation for which we are stewards. I will speak out for the weeds; they have as much a right to live as you do Bob. They are arguably contributing more than you are. While I am at it I will speak out for the pests too. The buzzing insects that ignore you and you seem to fear and loath. It is no wonder God gave them stingers because he knew in his wisdom that someday arrogant and ignorant humans would try to eradicate them.
    And here is where I stopped listening and started rolling my eyes. Sad as it was eloquent up to that point.
    PS there are plants that need to be removed from certain locations. If you don't believe that I challenge you to walk barefoot, with your children, through a yard invaded by bur buttercups or goat heads. Enjoy.
    Dan Hayden 4 Years. 9 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Brandon, Florida
    Posts
    79

    Default Re: Who Speaks for the Weeds?

    Here in Florida I have these small dark green weeds that have pretty white flower. But dare I go with my flip flops through the back acre and my feet will sting really really bad. My horticulture teacher was right a weed is a plant out of place. (Did not know Ben said it first)

    And to Beeophyte remind you lady garden caretaker that in nature nothing is straight or in order only us the children of God ( I just said the G word ) that only we as children are convinced everything should be in order square and plumb.

    And if you do not believe this try to keep a dirt path straight.

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