Can you identify this plant?

What Plant Is This?

In front of our house is a large bed of perennial plants and flowers, mostly lilies with a couple of hostas, some violets, and chives mixed in. When I created the bed a few years ago, I thought of it as a rain garden, a place for water to fall off the roof of the house and flow into a space that would soak it up. Grass would never properly grow in that spot, on that side of the house, because of the sandy soil and giant shady oaks. The benefit of this perennial bed, aside from not having to do much to take care of it, is that it’s pretty.

This summer there were volunteer plants in the bed. Some I recognized as weeds I’ve seen elsewhere. (Know that I use the word “weeds” with some affection. Weeds are simply plants that grow in a spot where humans don’t want them. Shame on us.) Several of the volunteer plants were the same variety and had large, beautiful leaves. They grew tall (about 5 feet in height) quite fast and I kept waiting to see if they’d flower. I was expecting a large bloom that would help me identify the plants. Obviously, if the flowers were as attractive as the leaves, I’d want to keep these in the bed.

Here’s what the flowers looked like when they finally appeared along the stalk.

Can you identify this plant?
Can you identify this plant?

As you can see, the flowers are tiny. Don’t get me wrong … they’re pretty, but they’re so small that the rest of the plant dwarfs them.

I have no idea what this plant is and am hoping one of my readers can identify it for me. (Yes, I could hunt and peck on Google Images, but what is the fun of that?)

So far I can’t bear to pull them.


Addendum – June 27, 2015

I was asked to provide a photo of the whole plant, which I would have done at the beginning except that I had forgotten to take one. (Silly me!) So, for those of you trying to help me identify this plant, here’s what it looks like in its entirety.

Unknown plant, Mary Warner, 2015.
Unknown plant, Mary Warner, 2015.

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