10 Things you may not know about Dandelions

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If you’re like many people, you’re not a fan of dandelions, especially when they show up in your yard. But these bright yellow flowers have not always had such a negative reputation and are in fact, an amazing little flower worth cultivating. Just think how pretty your yard could be if it was spotted with yellow rather than all green. You’d be the talk of the town!

10 Things You may not know about Dandelions

1. They originated in Asia and were used there both for food and medicine. They were brought here by the Spanish and the German.

2. Every part of this flower is useful, from the root to the leaves and even the flower. The leaves are edible and contain vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, C, K and potassium, iron and manganese. One cup of  leaves from Dandelions have twice as much Vitamin A than what’s in most supplements. Just one cup has as much calcium as 1/2 of a glass of milk.

3. Dandelions have the longest flowering season of any plant.

4.  The Chinese have used Dandelions for thousands of years to treat diabetes, cancers as well as bacterial and fungal infections.

5. The word Dandelion comes from the French word Dent de Lion which means lion’s tooth. Look at the edges of Dandelion leaves and you’ll see why–they are corsely toothed.

6. As you likely know, the seeds are spread by the wind. In a good breeze, the seeds may travel 5 miles from the plant!

dand-36857. Have you ever watched a woodchuck in a field of Dandelions? They pick the flowers and eat them as if they are candy! Other animals like deer eat them too.

8. Dandelions are found on all continents and have been used throughout history for food, medicine and for dye.

9. Also as you may likely know, especially if you’ve tried to rid your yard of them, dandelion leaves will grow back if the taproot is left intact. Thus, mowing them will only make them temporarily disappear. Like the Energizer Bunny–they will come back!

10. The flowers open in the morning and close at night. They may also close on cloudy, overcast days.

When I see a field or a yard filled with dandelions, I feel compelled to cheer and smile and be happy. What’s not to like about yellow mixed in with green? If only our society would see the beauty in this hardy little plant that has been around for as long as anyone can remember.

What are your thoughts about dandelions?

 

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