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Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica)

Every living thing known to man has a Latin name that should be used when referring to that species in a formal scientific context. For example, human beings are Homo sapiens, polar bears are Ursus maritimus, and the common sunflower is Helianthus annuus.

In theory, these scientific names are internationally recognised - what you call a 'dog' is called a 'chien' in France and a 'koira' in Finland, but biologists in all three countries should understand what Canis lupus familiaris means.

So what is the proper name for Japanese knotweed? Read a few articles online, and you may notice that different sources use different Latin names when referring to this pesky plant - Fallopia japonica and Reynoutria japonica are the most common, but Polygonum cuspidatum and various other monikers pop up from time to time as well.

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where does moss come from

As a gardening enthusiast, it can be really frustrating when moss starts to appear in unwanted places. Knowing what moss is and where it comes from will help you maintain a moss free garden. So, if you're concerned by the amount of moss in your garden, we'll help you understand the problem and deal with it efficiently.

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Property with a garden

In a recent interview with the Daily Express, property expert Ray Harriot advised that sellers should tell the truth about Japanese knotweed on their property - even if this would complicate the transaction.

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Japanese knotweed

Recent studies suggest that Japanese knotweed could be more effective than antibiotics at treating Lyme disease!

Lyme disease is a tick-borne infection that is known to cause numerous unpleasant effects including meningitis, face paralysis, heart palpitations and severe headaches. While people think that Lyme disease is fairly uncommon, there are over 365,000 new cases of it in the USA and Europe alone.

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lockdown weeds

There are so many things that have been neglected because of coronavirus through no fault of their own. Sadly, weeds in public spaces are one of them! Usually, council workers would make weed control one of their top priorities in the run-up to spring/summer, but a lot of the workers have been required to provide other, more essential services so the weeds have been left to grow wild. 

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Japanese knotweed

Outside of fictional works like The Day of the Triffids and Little Shop of Horrors, very few plants inspire as much dread as Japanese knotweed. This invasive weed has caused countless headaches for homeowners all over the UK, devaluing affected properties by 10 per cent on average.

And yet, as we've discussed before on this blog, Japanese knotweed is barely a problem at all in its native land. While the plant is still considered a weed in Japan, it does not have anything like the toxic reputation it has in this part of the world.

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how to get rid of unwanted shrubs

If you're thinking about redesigning your garden, you might be wondering how you can strip your garden back and start a-fresh. Shrubs, like trees, become well established in your garden over time, their roots run deep into the ground and they can grow up to several metres in height and width. If you'd like to get rid of your unwanted shrubs, you're in the right place. We'll talk you through the removal process step by step so you can start working towards the garden of your dreams.

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Pink flowers

SHORT ANSWER: Japanese knotweed flowers are usually white, but dwarf Japanese knotweed - a related species - sometimes grows pink flowers. Additionally, there are several other pink-flowered plants that are commonly mistaken for Japanese knotweed.

Japanese knotweed can be identified by a number of distinctive characteristics: the bamboo-like stems, the heart-shaped leaves, and the clusters of flowers that appear in late summer.

These flowers are quite small, and they're usually white or cream in colour.

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If you're a keen gardener, you probably know that plants are capable of reproducing in numerous different ways. Most commonly, plants reproduce using seeds, but some species propagate a different way - by producing bulbils

lilies

What are bulbils?

Bulbils are small nodules that appear on stem of an existing plant, sometimes in place of a flower. These nodules contain the exact same genetic material as the parent plant, so put simply, bulbils are a clone of their parents! This form of reproduction is asexual, so the plant didn't need to be fertilised by the pollen on a passing bee in order to create offspring.

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Rubbish skip

Disposing of Japanese knotweed is a delicate business. One must be extremely careful when handling this invasive weed - even a tiny fragment of its hardy rhizome root system can grow into a whole new plant if returned to the soil.

For this reason, there are a lot of rules about what you can and can't do with Japanese knotweed after digging it up. If you allow the plant to spread into the wild, you may be fined thousands of pounds or even imprisoned (see Japanese Knotweed Law).

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