A weed is a plant that is growing where it’s not wanted!
In most cases, garden weeds grow from seed that has blown into the garden or has been transported by birds and insects. Sometimes weeds such as couch grass creep into the garden and although it might be fine when it’s lawn, when it gets into the garden where it’s not wanted, it is a weed.
There are also environmental weeds which are plants that people grow in their garden but they ‘escape’ and start to grow in our Australian bush. So, although they might be beautiful in the garden, these plants can be a real threat to our bushland if they are allowed to establish. They are a weed because they are growing where they aren’t wanted.
The problem with weeds is that they are ‘garden robbers’! They steal the nutrients and water in the soil that the other plants need to survive. They also steal space in the garden and sometimes even smother the other plants so that they die because they can’t see the sun.
The other problem with weeds is that they are tough! Often they are even tougher than the other plants in the garden and that’s why they manage to grow just about anywhere. Think about it. Do you see weeds or pretty flowers growing in the tiny cracks in the hot pavement where there’s hardly any food or water? It’s weeds. They are so tough that they can even grow there.
Plus, the tiny flower heads and soft leaves on weeds bring bad bugs into the garden which then start to damage the other plants as well.
The only thing that you can do with weeds is to try to get them out of your garden as quickly as possible before they flower and produce seeds which then grow into more weeds in the garden.
This video has been sped up so that you can see the dandelion flowers going to seed and then opening up into those puffballs that you see in the garden. Each of the white balls is full of hundreds of seeds which then blow away and start to grow everywhere in the garden or lawn. They are pretty but are, in fact, an annoying weed!