Plant ID forum: Chameleon Plant (Houttuynia cordata)

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Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
May 3, 2014 9:00 AM CST
Brought this ground cover home from the local swap - it looked as if it had been run over by a truck or two, but it is perking up now. Anyone know what it is? and if I should let it loose in my yard?
Thanks
Thumb of 2014-05-03/greene/60c690 Thumb of 2014-05-03/greene/22789d

Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
May 3, 2014 10:42 AM CST
Maybe ?
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
May 3, 2014 10:45 AM CST
Well, forget that ... as I look at more photo's I don't think Asarum is right.
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Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
May 3, 2014 3:21 PM CST
Leaves look like Viola, but the stem is unusual.
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Name: Joy Wooldridge
Kalama, Wa. (Zone 8b)
Sunset Zone 6, Heat zone 4,
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Joy
May 3, 2014 11:42 PM CST
Hope I am wrong, but it reminds me of field Bindweed, also called perennial morning glory- Convolvulus arvensis. It's a Morning glory's wild relative. If it is, It's very invasive and tough to get rid of once you have it.

https://www.google.com/search?q=convolvulus+arvensis&rls=com...

Or perhaps it's one of the tamer Morning glories?
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Name: Danita
GA (Zone 7b)
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Danita
May 4, 2014 2:44 AM CST
Hi Greene, Smiling
It looks like Houttuynia cordata to me.

Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
May 4, 2014 7:02 AM CST
@Danita,
Houttuynia (Houttuynia cordata) That's it, thanks!

I am researching now but so far have discovered it is one of the plants I like to call...
(deep breath)...
"It-may-cure-every-disease-in-the-known-world-but-this-plant-is-invasive-if-you-do-not-eat-it-fast-enough". Rolling on the floor laughing

Will definitely not let this one loose in the garden, but with all the health benefits will grow this in a contained environment in an artificial bog set-up.
Thank You! everyone for your answers.

Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Rabbit Keeper Critters Allowed Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages
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greene
May 5, 2014 7:41 PM CST
Update: My friend Plant Sister says that she plants this as a 'snail magnet' to keep the snails off the more desirable plants.
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
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pirl
May 5, 2014 8:10 PM CST
I fought with Houttuynia cordata for many years and had to pot up daylilies to cover the ground with black plastic, for months, and had to use poison to kill it. I tried digging it out for many years - hopeless. I wouldn't plant it and would trash it ASAP. It's EVIL.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
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wildflowers
Jun 25, 2015 5:12 PM CST
hmmm.. I have this plant in a small pot but now I'm re-thinking whether I should keep it or not.

@greene how is your plant doing? Is it taking over your garden, yard, the block?


Thumb of 2015-06-25/wildflowers/6f674e
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Name: Rob
Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Ever looking for new plants to kill
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plantrob
Jun 25, 2015 6:03 PM CST
The garden area I first planted it is still infested. Manageable, but kind of annoying to keep having to pull it up. Although I actually like the citrusy odor they give off when disturbed. On the other hand, I haven't managed to keep it alive when trying to grow it in a bog-like confined space. And I don't think I've seen it self-seed, just spread by roots. So it's probably fairly safe as long as you've got the roots 100% contained.
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Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
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NJBob
Jun 25, 2015 8:05 PM CST
Biggest mistake I ever made , still trying to get rid of it. Just keep it potted. If you do keep it place in a sunny area as it can get some nice coloring and the soil needs to be kept moist.
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
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Frillylily
Jun 25, 2015 8:31 PM CST
I too found this very invasive. It stinks also. It also lost the pretty red varigation and streaks it had when I first planted it. Also it spreads like CRAZY. I nicknamed it Demon Weed Hilarious! follows you around, haunts your garden and you can't kill it! Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Jun 25, 2015 8:41 PM CST
Well there you go. I have no intention of 'letting this loose' in my garden by planting it in the ground. I have it it a pot of soil and the pot is in an old bread pan full of water. I change out the water every two days to fool the mosquitoes and refresh the soil from time to time. Managed to pick up an old aquarium and hope to propagate more plants so there will be enough to actually eat.

I just took some photos using the flash but will have to recharge the battery before uploading. I'll come back in a while with some photos.
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Rabbit Keeper Critters Allowed Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages
Herbs Region: Georgia Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Dog Lover Composter
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greene
Jun 25, 2015 9:46 PM CST
This is the best photo I could get while stumbling around in the dark.
Thumb of 2015-06-26/greene/7e170e

Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
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wildflowers
Jun 26, 2015 6:14 AM CST
Thanks everyone. I definitely don't need to put this one in the ground and find out for myself!! It'll stay in a pot within a pot that doesn't have a hole in the bottom. Thumbs up

May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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pirl
Jun 26, 2015 7:35 AM CST
Wise move. The only way I managed to kill it was with Ortho's Poison Ivy and Tough Brush Killer* (undiluted) but that came only after many years of digging to no avail. They grow from the tiniest piece accidentally left in the earth.
Thumb of 2015-06-26/pirl/8b3a52

*Do not spray with any tank sprayer or you can kill desirable plants. You could put some killer in a sandwich sized plastic bag and bend the stem into the bag so the killer won't bother any other plants but if it's too close to anything good, be sure to protect the good plants very well (boxes, plastic bags, etc.) or you'll regret it.

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