LESSER CELANDINE, Ficaria verna
Also commonly called: fig buttercup, pilewort, figroot buttercup, figwort, bulbous buttercup, small crowfoot
A lot of people tend to overreact to weeds. They go to extremes to control every weed they see, even though some are far less harmful than others. But Lesser Celandine (Ficaria verna) is one you need to take seriously. It is a highly invasive plants in the Delaware Valley, and quickly overwhelms unsuspecting yard tenders. Wikipedia defines this weed as "a low-growing, hairless perennial flowering plant in the buttercup family Ranunculaceae native to Europe and west Asia. It has fleshy dark green, heart-shaped leaves and distinctive flowers with bright yellow, glossy petals." Once propagated, this plant begins growth in winter and remains small in its first year. Once it reaches spring of its second year, growth rapidly accelerates. Despite vigorous spreading, this is an ephemeral weed. It returns to dormancy in late May and won't be active again for six months.
Control: If you have seen this weed in your yard, or want to prepare for a future arrival, it is important to follow a few rules for removal. Soil and plant parts need to be removed in total, then bagged and disposed of, as accidentally missing parts in the ground will likely lead to aggressive spreading.
If you have a problem with this plant or concerns you'd like to discuss, please give us a call!