Giant weed in backyard - thick stalks, large leaves

Discussion in 'Plant ID' started by fullerbunch, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. fullerbunch

    fullerbunch New Seed

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    This weed has grown quickly to a height of about 15 feet. It has no flowers, thick stalks, and leaves that are larger than a man's head. It is in an area we don't mow and where rain water flows/collects. However it's been really dry here, so the area doesn't stay wet.

    We'd love to know what it is. You may check out my photobucket photos here http://s196.photobucket.com/albums/aa261/fullerbunch/
     



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  2. zuzu's petals

    zuzu's petals Silly Old Bat

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    Hi Fullerbunch, welcome to the Stew. :D

    Your tree sure looks like Paulownia tomentosa, watch it closely if you decide to keep it,
    I know that it's considered an invasive species in my part of the world.

    *edit to add -
    erm . . . just noticed . . . You're in NC :oops: *hehe* that is my part of the world.
     
  3. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Hi there Fullerbunch. :-D

    Zuzu seems to have hit the hammer on the head with her ID. The Paulownia tomentosa is also called the Foxglove 'weed.'

    Have a look at this website as it tells you all about your tree.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paulownia_tomentosa
     
  4. cajunbelle

    cajunbelle Daylily Diva

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    Wow, I'm impressed, I'd sure keep it. They make lovely flowers.
     
  5. TheBip

    TheBip Young Pine

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    O_O That is a huge weed! *falls over from shock*
     
  6. Primsong

    Primsong Young Pine

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    Holy cow - an invasion of those could totally dominate a small yard... now all you need is to add some elephant plants and banana trees and you'll feel very, very small.
     
  7. TulsaRose

    TulsaRose New Seed

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  8. fullerbunch

    fullerbunch New Seed

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    Questions about Paulowmia

    Thank you all for your quick and seemingly accurate replies. I did have a couple of questions. This seems to have several "trunks", almost like a plant rather than a tree, but then again, it is very young. Also, this is in a densley wooded area with many tulip poplars which are also tall. (most of them are thirty feet tall) I'm thinking at this point of just leaving it and seeing what happens.
    I really liked the Dave's garden link, thanks!

    Interestingly, I planted some perennial seeds last summer and what few came up, came up this spring. Among them was a foxglove about 40 feet from this plant. It had beautiful purple flowers and grew to about 6 ft. But it has not at all shot up like this.

    Would any of you say that this is hogweed? My father-in-law thought it was, but I don't think it looks a thing like hogweed.
     
  9. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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  10. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Today the mailman brought me the August/September issue of Horticulture magazine and what did I find on page 22 but a picture of your plant. The author of the article had it listed as one of 4 tropical looking plants that she considered have-to-haves in her garden.
    She cuts hers down to the ground every spring and only allows one or two shoots to grow. She says you still get the huge leaves but not the flowers or the problem of unwanted seedlings.
     
  11. jb19012

    jb19012 New Seed

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    Could this have been a giant sunflower?

    I actually have the same plant (see my profile garden) growing in my somewhat new SE Pennsylvania meadow. There seem to be too many for them not to have been planted with the meadow starter kit that I've used.

    I saw this photo (http://www.travelblog.org/Photos/591846.html), noticed the time of year, and figured I'd wait a bit longer to see if anything starts to bloom. There is no blossom yet, at all.

    The photos of tomentosa seem to have a leaf shape that was too pointed on the end, and the stalk is not tree-like in any way.

    I'm waiting to see what comes of this monstrosity, now easily approaching 10 feet tall, and wondering whether it will bear anything worth reporting.
     
  12. jb19012

    jb19012 New Seed

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    Tomentosa Proven

    For anyone who finds this, I've confirmed that my plant (and most likely the plant in the original photos) is indeed that horrid, invasive beast paulownia tomentosa.

    I happened to find the mother plant (now a tree) in a neighboring yard and will pursue eradication (perhaps in the midnight hours) and hope that my own eradication efforts will be effective.

    I wish I had sunflowers, though!

    [​IMG]
    Is this a sunflower or tomentosa? ( photo / image / picture from jb19012's Garden )





    [​IMG]
    Reaching roughly 10 feet ( photo / image / picture from jb19012's Garden )
     
  13. Patti Barnhart

    Patti Barnhart New Seed

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    Big leaf weed

    There is one next door. It's growing between asphalt and the house. It grew about ten feet in the summer. It stopped growing and lost a lot of leaves when it got cold. Nobody knows what it is. I took a leaf to an established nursery and they didn't know either. ????
     
  14. jb19012

    jb19012 New Seed

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    I confirmed this was tomentosa, so hopefully you'll get this eradicated soon. Best wishes!
     
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