Bladder_flower_781276 copy

Campion or “bladder” flower is one of those weed or wildflower flowers. Our local agricultural extension classifies it as a nuisance. We have several species in our area and this one is either a Bladder Campion: Silene latifolia or Parry’s Campion: Silene parryi. My untrained eye is unable to distinguish between the two and even if it is a weed it is a fine looking weed. 

2 thoughts on “Campion

  1. As a gardener I am continually defending the “weeds” of my area and encouraging people to look closer and actually learn about them as plants. The word “weed” is a value judgment and not generally informative. Like “foreigner” or “asshole.” “Invasive” is a more specific word, but still usually only means we brought it here and it’s doing really well in the disturbed ecosystems we have created. Is that so bad? When people want something identified in my social media gardening group, they say things like “What is this awful weed and how do I get rid of it?” Or an innocent “Could someone identify this plant?” Gets comments like “Weed! Vinegar or burn it.” So far in every case I’ve found these plants are mining nutrients efficiently that can then be released for crops by pulling and composting the plant, it’s edible and more nutritious and hardy than the crops, or it’s feeding animals important to the crops such as pollinators. If “invasive,” it was often brought by settlers as a food source as they didn’t have local knowledge. Disturbing native ecosystems? Yes. More than humans themselves? No.


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