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Old 08-04-2009, 01:37 PM   #1
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This goldenrod has seemingly volunteered in my garden. Given the bloom time and the winged leaves, I thought it was likely to be Solidago juncea. However, one factor weighs heavily against this identification: there are a couple dozen of these goldenrods scattered about, but not a single one of them has basal leaves. Every description and photograph of Solidago juncea I've seen mentions or depicts a large tuft of broad, basal leaves. However, I haven't found any site that lists every single goldenrod species (both within and without the Solidago genus), so it's possible that I've overlooked some other possibilities.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:54 PM   #2
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Hello Amelanchier, Solidago species are notorious for hybridizing. However, I believe that you are correct in identifying this plant as Solidago juncea. Even with the absence of basal leaves, the flower structure and the small leafs in the axis of the branches are all indicative of Early Goldenrod.
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Old 08-04-2009, 02:34 PM   #3
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Thanks PB! In your experience, is this an aggressive species? (Given that about two dozen of them volunteered in my garden, I'm assuming that it is, and that I should try to control it, but I'm interested in any opinions.)
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Old 08-04-2009, 04:42 PM   #4
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Hi, Many of the Goldenrods can become quite agressive. Some have rhizomes that can quickly get out of hand; and others are prolific seed producers. S. juncea tends to be one that spreads by seed and should not be used in a garden situation. It is better if placed in a naturalized area. You might want to look at my article "Stars in the Garden" to see some suggestions of species to use.
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Old 08-04-2009, 04:50 PM   #5
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Just a FWIW on the missing basal leaves. Edward G. Voss notes in his work Michigan Flora that " ... In some species, separate basal rosettes are formed, with leaves similar to (or even larger than) the lowest cauline leaves, which sometimes wither by flowering time. (Species with the mid-cauline leaves no smaller than the lower ones do not produce separate rosettes.) ... ".
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Old 08-04-2009, 04:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Porterbrook View Post
Hi, Many of the Goldenrods can become quite agressive. Some have rhizomes that can quickly get out of hand; and others are prolific seed producers. S. juncea tends to be one that spreads by seed and should not be used in a garden situation. It is better if placed in a naturalized area. You might want to look at my article "Stars in the Garden" to see some suggestions of species to use.
Well, it is a totally "wild garden." I'm just worried about its competing too aggressively with some of the more finicky species growing in that area, like Lythrum alatum, Lysimachia quadriflora, Sisyrinchium angustifolium, and Monarda media. If it is as aggressive as, say, Solidago canadensis, I will definitely pull it, because I've seen what that can do around here. But if it's more like Symphyotrichum novae-angliae, I might leave a few specimens. Does that make sense?
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Old 08-04-2009, 04:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirsium View Post
Just a FWIW on the missing basal leaves. Edward G. Voss notes in his work Michigan Flora that " ... In some species, separate basal rosettes are formed, with leaves similar to (or even larger than) the lowest cauline leaves, which sometimes wither by flowering time. (Species with the mid-cauline leaves no smaller than the lower ones do not produce separate rosettes.) ... ".
Oh, interesting. I really don't recall seeing a basal rosette for these at any time, though. Maybe it's something that this species develops in its second or third year.
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:22 PM   #8
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If you already have a naturalized area, I would leave a few plants to provide some color at this time of year. You can always remove the flowers from some of the plants as they begin to fade. That would control any seeds being dispersed. And if you feel later that they are getting out of hand, then you can eliminate them from the area. See if Solidago odora grows in your area. If it does, I highly recommend it. The flowers are similar to S. juncea, but the plant does not get as tall and the leaves have an anise fragrance.
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:54 PM   #9
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I got one Solidago odora plant last year to see what it was like, and I did enjoy it, but it didn't return this year. That may be one to raise from seed.
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Old 08-04-2009, 11:18 PM   #10
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If they are first year seedlings, I would say they haven't formed a basal rosette yet. They probably do that post flowering to bulk up for winter. I agree with Porterbrook, leave some to flower and control them by cutting back flowerheads before they seed. I don't think they will be as aggresive as canadensis, which is a vigorous rhizome producer. Interestingly enough, my odora never came back either. Maybe it isn't as hardy as advertised.
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