Southern Coasts

May, 2001
Regional Report

Web Finds

Invasive Plant Sites
Over the years many non-native trees and shrubs such as privet and tallow tree have been introduced to our region. These plants are fast growing but come with a price. You can distinguish between native and non-native plants with a little research. Pulling Together and Wildland Invasive Species Program are two Web sites that address the problem of invasive plants.

Many exotics have spread from gardens into the wild, quickly becoming weeds that threaten natural habitats. The bully I hate most is common privet, once so popular for its instant hedge quality. All it has ever done for me is harbor whiteflies. It has spread across the Southeast, shading out native woodland plants in its wake. Before buying any plant, be sure it won't become a weed in our landscape by checking it on these Web sites.

Favorite or New Plant

Like many gardeners I like trying new plants. My latest is the Bacopa sutera. If you believe the press, it should be as tough as purslane and twice as beautiful, but my first experience growing it was a failure. I love the tiny white or purplish flowers, small foliage, and creeping habit, so I tried again. This time I found that it needs sun, heat, and, most of all, a dry root zone between waterings. Now that I've learned to grow this cute annual in a clay pot with Aloe vera and other succulents, it's growing and blooming fine.

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