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It's grown up my unused bench and I think it actually looks pretty. Is it dangerous, noxious, or uncontrollable? It's been there for almost a year and hasn't flowered. It grows up trees (I try to cut it down when it does). It makes a large tangled shrub at the bottom.

Photos: (click to enlarge)

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That is Asparagus asparagoides, a vigorous rambler from South Africa. It has naturalized and become an invasive weed in other places in the world (such as California, Australia, New Zealand), after being introduced as an ornamental/landscape plant and florists plant.

Identifying features include:

  • The 'leaves' (technically called phylloclades), they are actually flattened stem segments, and show the parallel venation typical of monocots.
  • Rambling/climbing growth habit
  • Underground tubers (they will be much better developed under bright lighting conditions on mature plants)
  • Small white flowers, followed by berries (again, more commonly on mature plants in plenty of sun).

Depending were you live, this may be considered an invasive weed in your area. If it begins to flower and fruit, I'd recommend removing it, so that it doesn't begin moving into the surrounding neighborhood.

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  • Thanks. I will be sure to remove it if it flowers, although it seems really tough to remove according to some websites. – jkd Sep 22 '17 at 2:16
  • There's not much info online considering it's a "Weed of National Significance" in Australia. – jkd Sep 22 '17 at 2:23
  • @J.Musser is this the same or related? Tradescantia albiflora? Wandering jew? They've changed so many genus names. – stormy Sep 22 '17 at 20:34
  • I'd pull a bit up and plant in a pot with potting soil. I love the purple of the species! – stormy Sep 22 '17 at 20:35
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    @stormy no, that is a very different species. – J. Musser Sep 22 '17 at 21:57

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