re: Lesser Celandine, Ranunculus ficaria L. Now producing small yellow flowers in early April. Is it true that when the plant dies back, in May, NOTHING else will grow in that area during the rest of the summer or year?
Lesser celandine goes dormant over the summer. It will seem to disappear.
Because it grows so densely in very early spring, it smothers or out-competes early spring wildflowers (native flowers.) These will lose out to the lesser celandine and die out completely.
That does not mean that lesser celandine kills or out-competes all other plants in the area. Larger plants, such as shrubs, will certainly grow in an area when surrounded by lesser celandine. Many herbaceous plants that emerge later in the spring should be able to survive after the mat of lesser celandine is gone.