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Fran’s blog about the ban on non-native invasive aquatic plants got me wondering as to whether we would learn anything from this about importing plants. This is just one example – Japanese Knotweed springs to mind!

The global village means that plants are moved around the globe with much more ease than they were 150 years ago and, probably, with less thought as to the growing conditions.

One of the plants that I foresee as being a problem not many years down the line is Galium odorata – sweet scented bedstraw or sweet woodruff. I suspect that this will become the bedstraw version of the Spanish bluebell. We have two native British species – G.album and G.verum (hedge bedstraw and Lady’s bedstraw). G.odorata is not a British native but since it was used at Chelsea a couple of years ago it has become a popular ground cover plant. But it is already known to be a problem – a plant that we are warned not to put amongst perennials as its roots ‘may become a nuisance’ and it has indefinite spread.

How long I wonder before all those people who bought it on the back of Chelsea are tearing their hair out because they can’t get rid of it and it is suffocating everything else?

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