Plant ID forum: Is this a houseplant growing outside?

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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Jul 23, 2014 8:26 PM CST
I swear that this looks like a houseplant to me! I have no idea what it is, and it just showed up in the flower bed about a month ago. It wasn't here last year that I ever noticed, especially not in the flower beds. I do not grow any houseplants, but it looks so familiar for some reason. The leaves are very rough, but don't appear to be hairy, and the plant is only about 5 inches tall right now. Not sure what to do with it! The only thing that had been in that spot was a hosta, which I planted there, and then had to move it a couple of months later. Prior to me planting the hosta, I saw nothing growing there.

Thanks for any suggestions!

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Natalie
Name: Kent Pfeiffer
Southeast Nebraska (Zone 5b)
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KentPfeiffer
Jul 23, 2014 9:11 PM CST

Moderator

It's a smartweed (Polygonum or Persicaria, depending on who you believe) of some kind. I would have guessed Jumpseed (Polygonum virginianum), but it's not supposed to occur anywhere near Idaho. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a similar species growing in your part of the world, but I don't know which one it might be.

Or, maybe, it was tagging along in the pot with the hosta?
[Last edited by KentPfeiffer - Jul 23, 2014 9:13 PM (+)]
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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Jul 23, 2014 9:57 PM CST
Thanks Kent!

I brought the hosta with me from Utah when I moved last year, and it had been in the ground at least 5 years before moving. I never saw anything like this in my yard in Utah, so I'm pretty sure it didn't tag along. It's very interesting, whatever it is. Am I correct to assume that it's not actually a weed? The last thing I need around here are more weeds!
Natalie
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 24, 2014 7:33 AM CST
Beware of any spontaneous plant bearing a chevron on the leaves. No way I would leave that UNpulled. There are sterile garden cultivars of similar looking plants, but the key word is sterile. That said, it can't spread around unless/until it drops some seeds (I think, somebody please correct me if this plant can creep.) Shouldn't be any harder to pull after you see the blooms, if you're curious.
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Name: Kent Pfeiffer
Southeast Nebraska (Zone 5b)
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KentPfeiffer
Jul 24, 2014 7:41 AM CST

Moderator

Natalie said:Thanks Kent!

I brought the hosta with me from Utah when I moved last year, and it had been in the ground at least 5 years before moving. I never saw anything like this in my yard in Utah, so I'm pretty sure it didn't tag along. It's very interesting, whatever it is. Am I correct to assume that it's not actually a weed? The last thing I need around here are more weeds!


That depends on what you consider to be a weed and which species it actually is. Smiling

Some species are extremely invasive, such as Japanese Knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum/Fallopia japonica/Reynoutria japonica) and Giant Knotweed Polygonum sachalinense/Fallopia sachalinensis/Reynoutria sachalinensis). The hybrid between those two is even worse! Your plants don't look like any of those, though.

On the other hand, many of the native species are considered to be valuable wildlife plants and some are even grown as ornamentals. Shrug!

Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Jul 24, 2014 8:04 AM CST
There are no leaf photo's of Red Shank (Persicaria maculosa) in the database but the leaves sure resemble it in these photo's:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persicaria_maculosa#mediaviewer...
http://wisplants.uwsp.edu/scripts/bigphoto.asp?bigphoto=POLP...
https://gobotany.newenglandwild.org/species/persicaria/macul...
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Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Jul 24, 2014 8:24 AM CST
Polygonum capitatum?
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Jul 24, 2014 8:29 AM CST
greene: Those leaves sure resemble Pink Knotweed (Persicaria capitata) too ... very pretty!
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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Frogs and Toads Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers
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Natalie
Jul 24, 2014 9:25 AM CST
This is really interesting! And kind of scary, if it's something bad that could take over! The good news, I guess, is that it is right next to the front porch, where I can keep a close eye on it. Hilarious!

Something I just noticed, which I didn't notice yesterday, is that the leaves are hairy. I never saw the hairs when I was looking at the plant, but I can easily see them in the picture. Does that help to narrow it down?

After looking at all of the pictures, it most closely resembles Jumpseed (Polygonum virginianum) to me, except for the variegated leaves. I see no white, cream, yellow, or anything other lighter colors on the leaves. Maybe those colors develop later?



It also looks very similar to Pink Knotweed (Persicaria capitata), which Lin pointed out.



I think I can rule out Red Shank (Persicaria maculosa), which does look very similar, but the leaf shape is wrong. It sure is pretty though!

I agree that it must be a knotweed or jumpseed of some type. I'm leaning toward knotweed, but only because I found more pictures of the leaves that resembled this plant. It may be that I just haven't found pictures of jumpseed that are correct. None of them seem to be native to my area, but it could be an ornamental that the previous owner planted (that would be a stretch), but just now started to grow. Not sure if the seeds would take that long to germinate, and while they did have some plants growing here in the flower bed, none of them were mysterious, or uncommon.

Now what to do with it. I'd like to see if it will bloom, which would help with the ID, but at the same time, I'm afraid to leave it! I think curiosity has gotten the better of me, which isn't always a good thing, and I'll leave it for now, but watch it closely for any signs of it taking over the world. Maybe potting it up would be the smart thing?

Any other suggestions would be most appreciated!
Natalie
Name: Kent Pfeiffer
Southeast Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Plant Identifier Region: Nebraska Forum moderator
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KentPfeiffer
Jul 24, 2014 10:29 AM CST

Moderator

Persicaria virginiana 'Painter's Palette' is a variegated-leaf cultivar of Persicaria virginiana. Wild type P. virginiana doesn't have variegated leaves, but its leaves do have the red chevons (one note, many species of Polygonun/Persicaria have those markings on their leaves).

I don't know which species of Polygonum/Persicaria you have, but do know that it's not Persicaria capitata or Persicaria maculosa, for whatever that is worth.
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Jul 24, 2014 11:02 AM CST
@KentPfeiffer ... your wisdom is worth a lot in my book! I am really bad when it comes to comparing photo's for ID so mine are only suggestions as sorta looks like. Green Grin!

Natalie: If we have a general database entry for Persicaria you could upload a photo or two there and hopefully at some point someone would recognize which one it is and then it could be moved to the correct entry. I have a difficult time finding general entries in our database so hopefully if someone can find one they will link to it here on this thread.
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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Frogs and Toads Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers
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Natalie
Jul 26, 2014 9:57 AM CST
I agree Kent, your wisdom is worth a lot in my book too!

@plantladylin Lin, your suggestions and sorta looks like is much closer than I could have ever come, so your knowledge is worth a lot too!

I wonder, at this point, if it would be better to close this thread, and wait for a bloom? I had no idea if a bloom was even possible when the plant popped up!
Natalie
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Jul 26, 2014 10:20 AM CST
Natalie, I'm not really good at comparing photo's for identity and sometimes many plants can have the same appearance so I just usually make guesses as to what something looks like to my old eyes.

I searched in the database under Persicaria and couldn't find a general entry so I asked on the plant database forum if one could be created or if someone could point me in the right direction if it's already there. I'll let you know so that you can upload your photo's to the general database entry for Persicaria; then if someone ever recognizes the species or cultivar the photo's could be moved over to the proper location.
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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Frogs and Toads Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers
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Natalie
Jul 26, 2014 11:02 AM CST
Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!
Natalie
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Jul 26, 2014 1:24 PM CST
Natalie: You are very Welcome!

A general entry for Persicaria has been added to the database here: Persicaria The information area is currently blank but will show up as soon as a moderator gets a chance to approve it. You can go ahead and upload your photo's anytime.

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Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jul 26, 2014 1:58 PM CST
Persicaria Lance Corporal?
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Jul 26, 2014 2:09 PM CST
I don't know which it is; we don't have photo's or info in our database yet: Jumpseed (Persicaria virginiana 'Lance Corporal')

For comparison, there are photo's of P. virginiana 'Lance Corporal' at these sites:

http://www.avondalenursery.co.uk/plant.php?reference=1326812...

http://www.plantsforshade.co.uk/acatalog/Persicaria-virginia...

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/53502/
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Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jul 26, 2014 2:10 PM CST
I'll go take one and put it in the database.
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Jul 26, 2014 2:10 PM CST
Arlene: Thumbs up Thumbs up Thumbs up
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Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
Greenhouse Region: Georgia Garden Sages Organic Gardener Beekeeper Vegetable Grower
Seed Starter Cut Flowers Composter Keeper of Poultry Keeps Goats Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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abhege
Jul 26, 2014 2:20 PM CST



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