The Old Dog Decides: To Make Friends With an Old Enemy!

in wildedibles •  2 months ago  (edited)

The Dandelion. It's beautiful isn't it? It’s edible isn't it? It provides lots of vitamins and minerals doesn't it? It can be used in natural medicine can't it?   

The answers to those questions are yes, yes, yes and yes! Despite this I spent multiple decades viewing them as an enemy and digging the dandelions out of lawns where I lived and tossing them out as if they were some form of dangerous vermin.  But why?


I've decided to get to know this plant a little better! This one was growing on a little patch of grass in a parking lot!


In North America Dandelions are considered a pesky weed whereas in much of Europe and Asia they are valued for their incredible nutritional value.       

The Dandelion Has Many Uses!


The dandelion is one of the world’s most useful plants and can add much to your health and diet. It is rich in Vitamin A and potassium and is more nutritious than broccoli or spinach.    

All parts of the dandelion are useful. The young leaves can be used as greens in salads or in just about any recipe calling for spinach. The dried, roasted roots can be used for a coffee like beverage; and the blossoms, for wine! Wow!    

Throughout history the dandelion has been used as a liver tonic and cleanser, as a blood purifier and builder, and as a mild diuretic. It is also one of the top herbs in the Chinese medicine chest.   

Dandelions Seem to Grow Just About Everywhere! 


The big bonus? For people who have a lawn or access to a pasture, dandelions are free!  I’m going to try and make friends with this old enemy and use and appreciate it more!  It's time to go outside and pick some!


These were growing on a vacant lot in Lugano. That's a lot of salad and medicine available for free!


What About You?


  • Do people in your area harvest and use Dandelions?
  • Would you like to give them a try like I plan to do?
  • Do you have a favorite recipe or use for them?


Thanks for following me on my blockchain travels and I look forward to sharing my adventures with you.  
 
 

Until next time,    

 
@kus-knee (The Old Dog)   

Let's Succeed Together!

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I love nature and eat weeds daily!
Great to see you coming around!

I have always refused to let anyone put weed killer on my lawn because I have always loved dandelions. They turn my yard such a beautiful sunny yellow and it is for such a brief time that I never have felt the need to try to remove them. 2 weeks and they are done! I don't have a lovely green Lush carpet of grass, but that's okay too! I live in the woods. I don't need a golf course.

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You are wise!

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When I first moved here the spring and the creek were filled with watercress. Since then several homes have been built up the hill and they have beautiful lawns and have Chemlawn come and spray their yards several times a year. The chemicals wash down the hill into the spring and all of the broadleaf weed killers have killed off all of the Watercress that used to grow there. It's been an obvious lesson for me of all the damage those chemicals do.

Oh, yes!!!! Since I was a kid! My dad used to make a dandelion salad and if you got a flower, it was like a bonus. Hey! There were nine kids and they were considered frugal whereas now, we are homesteaders. ;)

I have never scoffed at the dandelion. I was too busy collecting them. Excuse me, can I weed your lawn???

!tip

@kus-knee,
Wow that photography is a pretty great one! Not seen this flower in my country before!

Cheers~

I am the only guy in my neighborhood that does not pay a big tank truck to come over and spray a bunch of chemicals on my lawn...I am not popular in my neighborhood.

I am drinking dandelion leaf tea as I read this. I like roasted dandelion root. I eat dandelion leaves in my salad. I make dandelion wine. Also have made ale using the roots for bitters. Oh and I have made butters with the main ingredient being Dandelion root.
I have a sign at the front of my yard that says “ Experimental Dandelion farm. Please watch where you walk.”

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Cool comment!

What are the healing properties of dandelion?
A large part of the Bulgarian yards and meadows, in the spring, are covered with a yellow carpet, whose healing qualities are unfortunately unknown to many of us.
Besides, to beautify the young girls in the form of a beautiful wreath in their hair, Dandelion has valuable healing properties.
Useful for our body is every part of the flower at different times of the year.
Unpleasant and compulsive is the taste of the herb immediately after it is removed, but after a short soak in water (to remove the bitter juices) and flavor, we can enjoy a wonderful vitamin salad, which, besides health, becomes a guardian of our figure .
Extremely useful for problems with the excretory system, grit and kidney stones, liver, gall stones and others are the roots of the plant from which tea is prepared.
The curative properties of dandelion leaves are not unknown to one of the most common diseases among young and old - Diabetes and blood pressure regulation.
For eczema and warts, the stems of the flower-herb, and in particular the "milk," which we can see each time we tear a blade of the plant, come to help, the problem areas are smeared with the white liquid, given that it could turn them into orange-brown colors.
Perhaps most of the readers remember that I mentioned the properties of ALL Dandelion parts above, and here I have not talked about the colors of the dandelion. Well, it is time to note that honey from the colors of the dandelions is extremely aromatic.
But what about our health?
Dandelion honey is an excellent antiallergen, just like the roots of the plant, it is useful again for bile problems and acts laxative in constipation, its beneficial effect on colds and ailments in the body.
More about the colors of the dandelion, I must mention that it even produces wine! Yes, however great it is for many, given the minimum amount of sugars in this plant, it is a worthy rival of grapes. It is no accident that Ray Bradbury, he calls his novel "Dandelion Wine".
Dandelion is among the most valued herbs in some eastern countries, such as China and India. This is one of the most common and affordable herbs.
However, it is extremely important to take this plant, as with most things, to be careful with the amount we consume.

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From me
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Great info. Thanks!

Nobody that i know harvests them but next time i'm out and about i certainly will think different about the humble dandelion. will pick and eat:) good to see you back

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Let me know how they are.

I'm so glad you are making friends with the dandelions; I wish more people would. They're beautiful and good for bees, too!
But dandelion root "coffee"?? I'm excited! I never heard of that before, must try!

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Let me know how the coffee goes!

I really liked this post idea and am looking forward to any recipes people will be leaving. Several years ago I learned how important the dandelion is to the bees that changed my mind about them. The neighbors will just have to get over it.

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Lol. Yes the neighbours! It's out of love for them and your life is now easier.

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Something tells me they'll live through it.

In North America Dandelions are considered a pesky weed whereas in much of Europe and Asia they are valued for their incredible nutritional value.

Erm.. they are actually pesky weeds here, at least in my garden they are!

There is this, but I doubt it will taste like the one Im used to at the local supermarket.

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Interesting looking drink!

Thank you for this valuable post. In my country Dandelion inform us that spring comes. Dandelion is very useful and harvesting here. Of course this flower is a good garden designer but also can be used for relaxing people.

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Great to know!

We also have dandelions as weed, but I know people who use it as medicine and even make dandelion jam

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Is that the jam?

I think the most important function of the dandelion is food for the bees and other pollinators. They tend to bloom early and stay late. I have even considered planting them on my balcony​. I might still do so. Although right now I have a little potage going and space is limited:).

()

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Yes, let's not forget the bees! I like your balcony idea!

This plant is my favorite food!
Every year in April I have a lot of young leaves every day on my table I feel the tide of energy!
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Good man!

We have plenty in our garden, but I haven't been meaning much use of them. I ought to at least have some leaves in a salad. I think my chickens like them. The flowers are good for the bees

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Give them a try in salad and let me know your opinion.

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We have picked the greens, from time to time... right now, I am looking out across our patch of lawn and there's a fine display of yellow flowers! They seem to have really come popping up since I did our first lawn mowing of the year.

I don't really have anything against them; they are pretty and very useful, as you have outlined here. When we kept chickens (our neighborhood association unfortunately banned "livestock" 6-7 years ago) they would get all the various dandelion parts and the result was deep yellow — almost orange — yolks in the eggs, and very healthy chickens!

You can put it in the salad :-D

I remember as a kid walking along the river sides with my mom and she would be digging these flowers out of the ground and we would carry them home in a big bucket and apart from eating the leaves in salads the big thing about these Dandelions that i loved was they were great medicine for head colds my mum would steam the leaves and roots up in a big pot then let it cool a bit and she would put out head face down over the pot with a blanket covering over us and pot and inhale the steam slowly and this would get rid of head colds and headaches the free medicine worked wonders. I must admit as a little kid i was always a bit worried that she was going to cook us up in the pot for been naughty boys....lol :)

Interesting informative post.

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Thanks!