Years and years ago, Mom gave me some of her columbines, mostly blue, and they happily grew and self-seeded throughout the garden. The bees love them (as you can see below), they provide a sea of blue in April and May, and they fill in lots of gaps.
But this year I looked around and realized that the columbines had taken over. They were EVERYWHERE, leaving no room for what had been purposely planted and no room for any new plantings or annual seedlings. Time for the great culling!
I learned quickly that although they have self-seeded, many must have come back every year, digging their fleshy roots even deeper into the ground. Here’s just one pile of uprooted plants, sent to the compost pile (where they will doubtless self-seed again).
If you look closely, you can see how big some of those roots are.
I started in the sunny border, then moved on to the front side garden (underneath the bedroom windows) and finally turned to the walkway garden. To see what a difference it makes, here is a before picture of the walkway garden:
All those upright stems are seedheads, ready to start the cycle over again. But after the culling you see this:
I’ve planted three Juno hostas and you can actually see them now. The calla lilies, which I got as a freeby with a bulb order years ago, have room to grow and might even bloom this year. The bare ground I’ve sowed with zinnias in hopes that they will fill in and add some color. A very satisfactory result.