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A controversial thought Must not have plants


Geranium [generally], petunias, privet and bedding begonia.

Well what about them? I am going to be brave and say I don’t like them much and if I can avoid growing them I do. If my dad were alive lupins would be on the list along with Hellebores, Lavender, Geum and Salvia.

One of our boundary hedges is Privet and I really don’t like the smell of the flowers. I think it is probably the smell of geraniums too. Though I do have a few in the garden, mainly bought for me rather than chosen by me.
They also provided colour in the shady parts until I found more pleasing ‘shady ladies’

I don’t know why I don’t like petunias as I am drawn to their splashes of colour then I realise they are petunias and I am disappointed. Don’t ask me why I just don’t know.

So I wondered about my gardening friends. We often talk about our must have plants but what about must not have plants?

I am surely not the only one who has dislikes.

Go on be brave and list your dislikes.

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I am not that keen on Petunias because I don't like the sticky leaves and flowers when I'm deadheading them, but I do like to see them. I grew them last year because Beryl always wanted them and the garden didn't seem right without them, but I really don't like the sticky leaves and flowers.

I don't like lawns, I find them boring and it's a lot of work mowing them (which is also boring). I think the best place for grass is in a field.

I don't know why but I dislike that spotty-leaved Laurel, Choisya, Rhododendrons, Pampas grass, Palm trees, Banana trees, tree ferns, and there's another plant I can't remember the name of which has thick dark palmate leaves and fluffy white flowers ... can't stand it lol :D

I must say I like all the ones you and your dad don't/didn't :)

... oh yes, I mustn't forget how much I dislike the bird of paradise flower , I nearly forgot that one :)

13 Jan, 2021


I don't like Kerria japonica, Viburnum rhytidophyllum.
Choisya Sundance, Ligularias, Kniphofia & Phlomis fruticosa. As I haven't room for them anyway, it doesn't matter. I wonder if Hywel is referring to Ricinus communis.
The petunias etc you dislike, l find are quite nice in pots or
hanging baskets, rather than planted out. I too like all the ones your Dad didn't. Just remembered I also hate that spotty Laurel, bad memories from childhood!

13 Jan, 2021


I love the geranium Rozanne, but that is the only one as the others always look straggly. I am not keen on petunias either!
I also like the big begonias which just go in pots or baskets.
Lupins are one of my favourites , but am always battling with slugs and snails which won't leave them alone and won't use slug pellets.

13 Jan, 2021


Can't think of any that I positively dislike to the extent of not having them except Hypericum calcynum (but I know there are a few if I could only remember what they are...) Do agree with Hywel over spotty laurel though - its quite nice when its very young but not when its grown. The same applies to spurge laurel.Oh and those snowball bushes in shrubberies (never can remember the name)
And although sloe flowers are very pretty and welcome in the very early spring their dreadful running habit cancels that out as a garden shrub.

Too many loved ones to list but specially love scented ones and very early spring bulbs

13 Jan, 2021


I hate choisya 'Sundance', all photinia, yuccas and phormiums. I have a special loathing of overbred, unscented roses and for some reason (probably the hideous garish pink) my especial dislike is with Rosa 'Bonica'. Fatsias leave me cold too.

With annuals I don't want coleus, double marigolds, overbred bloom-heavy fuchsias, annual impatiens or begonias. (Even though I was happy to have them this year through lack of choice and desperate for colour!).

I could add all the plants that I am 'going off' 'cos their press is better than their performance: helleborus orientalis, and geums I'm looking at you!

Thank you for that, SBG, I feel much better now.....

13 Jan, 2021


I have a love/hate relationship with grape hyacinths and wild garlic, love the flowers but rue the day they found their way into my garden, petunias I like to see but agree the deadheading is a nasty sticky task, do plant though to fill in during the summer months, don't like bedding begonias at all but like the hanging basket varieties, dislike bird of paradise, magnolia trees and the common St Johns Wort., thinking about it there are not many that I dislike......

13 Jan, 2021


There are only a few plants I avoid buying now.As Lincs says,Grape hyacinths are top of the list....can never completely clear them....Petunias I find myself avoiding at the's the way the petals go off and become slimey.
I must say some of the plants/shrubs I use to dislike, I find myself being drawn to in a more affectionate must be one of the peculiarities of becoming old.
I'm sure I've mentioned a few times,I have fallen in love with Hebes.

13 Jan, 2021


wow that is a fantastic response from you all. Thankyou.

Choysia and Photinia have all been in the garden for a short time and now are elsewhere, I dug them up and gifted them to a friend who did like them.

13 Jan, 2021


Good move, SBG!

13 Jan, 2021


This may/will ruffle a few feathers, most of the large ornamental grasses leave me cold too. Though I do have some carex that I like.

13 Jan, 2021


Grape Hyacinths are my pet hate, so much so that I sent a box of them to David up in Fife years ago for 'The Haven'.

Does anybody from GoY keep in touch with him? I see his last photos and blogs on here were in 2011 . . .

Also don't like the big mophead Hydrangeas or Aucuba, the latter always looks as though it has been splattered with paint!

13 Jan, 2021


I dislike petunias for the same sticky reasons as Hywel! I am not keen on bamboo and pampas grass either.
I am always disappointed in a rose which has no scent even if it is a very pretty one because I do love scent except for that foxy smell given out by some lilies!!!

13 Jan, 2021


I am not a fan of bulbs , even though I planted 50 of them lol , look great when flowering then an awful mess when gone over , a mouse in our garden loves them though! paperwhites give me severe headaches

Pampas because I had to remove one once and also cut my fingers as a kid very badly on one.


mahonia not a favourite , not hated just not my choice though

13 Jan, 2021


Interesting to read about everybody's dislikes.
I have not met a plant I do not like. I am mad at some because they are invasive and taking over but I cannot say that I do not like them because I do. I prefer some plants to others because they better fit my surroundings. I cannot name one single plant I do not like.... Stinging nettle, maybe?

14 Jan, 2021


stinging nettle lol indeed! They grow in front of my garden and sometimes I don't see them if I get stung I hurt for ages and get very bad weals

14 Jan, 2021


Now i like nettles [not the stings though] in the wilder part of the garden as food plants for a range of butterflies/moths. I do have a lot of British natives in the garden weeds to one of my neighbours but this year we have had over 200 different species of moth visit us.

14 Jan, 2021


SBG I agree with you about the nettles. I think what I hate most is the overbreeding, doubles of many flowers look hideous to my eye - hollyhocks, lilies, for example. Anything that ruins the natural 'grace' of many flowers.

14 Jan, 2021


I thought I liked all plants, but then you set me thinking... I really hate the 'Curry' plant and those horrid 'sticky weeds' I don't know their proper name... I like nasturtiums, ut I hate the black flies the seem to encourage.

14 Jan, 2021


I am not a fan of many doubles either Anget as the extra petals are usually what would have been the reproductive parts so again no use for feeding insects. I usually only grow species lilies though I have been bought fancy ones.

Waddy I don't mind a little bit of the sticky weed [if its the one I think you mean it is Galium aparine, its one of those that has many different common names depending where you are in the country. Cleavers, Sticky buds etc]

14 Jan, 2021


Can you have just a little bit of cleavers? Goes mad here given half a chance...One of our summer tasks is to patrol the place for seedlings and heave them out... But have happy childhood memories of using them as ammunition...

Paulinthemix, sorry about the nettle stings. Did you know that rubbing on leaf of ribwort plantain is better than dock leaves for relieving the sting? I leave one in the lawn for that very purpose... I did make nettle soup once in a fit of natural foodiness, but have never made it again, lol. What's nice about nettles is that they have bright yellow roots, which means you can painlessly dig them out when all the foliage has died back as they are easy to see!

14 Jan, 2021


didn't know that , never found dock leaves helped much for me I just ended up with green arms or legs lol

15 Jan, 2021


As most people know I detest Roses. Quite happy for other people to have them in their garden, but not in mine.

15 Jan, 2021


And just a thought for the stinging of the nettles. Bicarb of soda rubbed in to the area is an effective relief. Alkaline to acid.

15 Jan, 2021


Shirley I often see David on Facebook, not recently but guess he will be like all that work in NHS very busy.. He spends his leisure time walking and taking photographs whilst at it, he is good to follow as he always gives the history of the places he visits...

15 Jan, 2021


Sue, thanks so much for telling me ... I will PM you later.

15 Jan, 2021


Please don't hate me, but I dislike fushias of every kind. The flowers look like so much cheap gaudy jewelry I used to see at the five and dime shop. I don't like hot pink and purple together.

I also hate Leyland Cypress trees. The limbs are very weak and can't handle high winds, snow, ice. The branches break easily ruining the symmetry. They usually come crashing down causing a lot of collateral damage. Not with the storms we get, they won't last. Just in general they take up too much real estate. There are many better choices that won't cause so many costly problems later on.

16 Jan, 2021


Yorks: Cleavers only a little if you constantly weed them out. But there are a good number of moths etc that use it as a food plant.

Owd I only have a few roses as they were either gifts or chosen due to family links. Generally not keen on them.

Bathgate:I'm not keen on the very large doubles but I do like the small ones like Fucshia microphylla which tend to be just one colour. [Lottie Hobby is a nice named variety]
Agree about Leylandii.

16 Jan, 2021


Paul, I'd forgotten Leyland trees. I don't like them either. However I do like Fuchsias although I can see why you'd liken them to gaudy jewellery.

16 Jan, 2021


I can see why others would like fushias, but they are too dainty for my taste and the colors clash with everything I own.

16 Jan, 2021


Ditto with leylands. Boring to look at and hideous when they turn brown.
Yes, fuchsia 'Lottie hobby' is a nice one and the other small flowered varieties, I think.

16 Jan, 2021


Unfortunately, I have to agree. I don’t like fuchsias either. I find them too straggly and as mentioned earlier, a bit gaudy.
Not keen on pampas grass either. I don’t favour those big plumes, especially the pink ones.
I’m not a fan of bedding plants.
As for of my neighbours planted one on the bund hill..its massive, obviously. Thankfully not close to us..

16 Jan, 2021


Owd thanks for the tip re bicarb! (not that its often convenient to trot off into the house to apply it...)
Eileen I will try to forgive the cleavers if moths like eating it, but there are nowhere enough moths to eat all ours.
I just looked it up and apparently its good for all sorts of things medicinally.

16 Jan, 2021

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