Podcast: Let's Argue About Plants

Episode 121: Wicked Plants

They’re creepy and they’re kooky, mysterious and spooky. They’re all together ooky. Nope, it’s not the Addams family; it’s the array of wicked plants on today’s episode. It’s Halloween season, so we’ll be talking about an assortment of plants that are spiky, darkly pigmented, stinky, or perhaps even the most wicked of all—invasive. But don’t think every perennial or tree on this episode is unworthy of a spot in your garden; some are actually quite lovely landscape specimens. Can a plant truly be frightening? Sure it can—just ask Seymour Krelborn.

For further reading on wicked plants, check out this book by Amy Stewart.

Expert guest: Christine Alexander is the digital content editor for FineGardening.com.

Danielle’s Plants

‘Sasaba’ holly tea olive (credit: Andy Pulte)
‘Sasaba’ holly tea olive. Photo: Andy Pulte

‘Sasaba’ holly tea olive (Osmanthus heterophyllus ‘Sasaba’, Zones 6b–10)

Jack in the pulpit
Jack in the pulpit

Jack in the pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum, Zones 4–9)

Wingthorn rose
Wingthorn rose
Closeup of wingthorn rose thorn
Close-up of wingthorn rose thorn

Wingthorn rose (Rosa sericea spp. pteracantha, Zones 5–9)

Carol’s Plants

Common dogbane
Common dogbane

Common dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum, Zones 4–8)

'Barker's Variety' monk’s hood
‘Barker’s Variety’ monkshood

‘Barker’s Variety’ monkshood (Aconitum carmichaelii ‘Barker’s Variety’, Zones 3–7)

‘Flying Dragon’ hardy orange
‘Flying Dragon’ hardy orange
‘Flying Dragon’ hardy orange thorn closeup
‘Flying Dragon’ hardy orange thorn close-up

‘Flying Dragon’ hardy orange (Citrus trifoliata ‘Flying Dragon’, Zones 5–9)

Christine’s Plants

‘Teton’ firethorn (credit: Flickr, Photo: John Winder)
‘Teton’ firethorn. Photo: Flickr, John Winder

‘Teton’ firethorn (Pyracantha ‘Teton’ Zones 6–9)

‘Zanzibarensis’ castor bean (credit: Photo: GAP/Tim Gainey)
‘Zanzibarensis’ castor bean. Photo: gapphotos.com/Tim Gainey

‘Zanzibarensis’ castor bean (Ricinus communis* ‘Zanzibarensis’ Zones 8–10)

Chinese wisteria (credit: Flickr, Photo: Melytsu)
Chinese wisteria. Photo: Flickr, Melytsu

Chinese wisteria (Wisteria sinensis*, Zones 4–9)


*This plant is considered invasive in certain parts of North America.

View Comments


Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Related Articles

The Latest