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Goutweed or Bishop’s weed

Goutweed or Bishop’s weed

Goutweed or Bishop’s weed

(Aegopodium podagraria)

Priority: -  Control

Tags: Terrestrial

Identification and Reproduction

Identification 

  • Goutweed is a creeping perennial in the Apiaceae, or carrot, family.
  • Stems will grow up to one metre and leaves will form a dense canopy.
  • Cultivated varieties often have variegated leaves (white edges), but can also revert back to solid green. Leaves are compound, toothed and arranged in an alternate pattern. 

 

  • It has flat, umbrella-like clusters of small white flowers. Blooms occur in June. 

Reproduction

It spreads vegetatively by rhizomes and will regrow from severed roots

Habitat & Ecology

Goutweed is most aggressive in moist and partial shade areas. It invades deciduous woodlands, riparian areas, wetlands and grasslands. 

Impacts

  • It can impede the growth of native plants, including tree seedling germination.
  • Goutweed invades forests, pastures, and disturbed sites.

Management

Mechanical/Manual Control: 

  • Mechanical removal is not effective as any broken rhizome will re-establish. 
  • A combination of mowing and applying a tarp to restrict sunlight will help suffocate and kill this plant. Surface covers should be left for at least 2 weeks. 

Chemical Control:

  • Chemical applications are effective on young plants but mature infestations may be resistant.

Resources

For more information check out the USDA Aegopodium podagraria page here

View header photo here