Mulberry weed, Fatoua villosa, is the worst weed-foe that I have ever encountered. It is a survivor.
It has alternate leaves with spiked, microscopic hairs as well has hairy stems. Little “stemlets” and blooms come from the nodes where the leaf emerges from the stem.
If you break off the top of the plant, the stem “medusas out” and it comes back up as a little bush.
The tiny white flower clusters ripen into purple pod clusters full of tiny seeds.
The seeds shoot out of the dried pods as you pull up the plant. You must get it before blooms ripen into pods.
Do not throw these weeds on your compost pile. If you do you will plant them next year. Even the tiny plants can set seed.
It is an import from Asia that piggy-backs into your plantings from nursery stock.
It is suspected of coming to the USA with the troops and equipment after WWII.
It is described as noxious and invasive. These are not terms of endearment.
I usually try to find attributes for my local weeds, but this is an imported pest that ranks right up there with Kudzu.
Follow the FLOWER. Return next Wednesday for another visit with a WEED.