Dandelions!


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My lawn was mowed day before yesterday and already I have a bumper crop of dandelions!

They don't bother me one bit, they're cheerful and bees like them. :) There's also a bunch of tiny purple violets all over but I don't think they show up in the photo.
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Dandelions were brought to the new world by a Greek physician as a medicine (either in the 18th century or in the 1800's, someone can fact check me, i am too lazy). And, they were successful in reseeding much to the dismay of lawn purists. Soon dandelions were everywhere and frequently unwanted. Personally i love dandelions and grew them in a garden in the US Pacific Northwest, on purpose in their own bed. Dandelion roots have a special B vitamin (most potent in the Fall) generally only found in mammals. Being a vegetarian, this was of interest to me. In addition to what @Beth_B said about their appeal to bees, the roots can be roasted and brewed like coffee, and is delicious. The young leaves are tasty in salads, and i think it is the flower that dandelion wine comes from (need fact check). They are also cheery little flowers. So, congratulations on your lovely dandelion crop Beth_B and your enjoyment of having them(y) Personally, i think your lawn is lush and lovely.:)
 
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Dandelions were brought to the new world by a Greek physician as a medicine (either in the 18th century or in the 1800's, someone can fact check me, i am too lazy). And, they were successful in reseeding much to the dismay of lawn purists. Soon dandelions were everywhere and frequently unwanted. Personally i love dandelions and grew them in a garden in the US Pacific Northwest, on purpose in their own bed. Dandelion roots have a special B vitamin (most potent in the Fall) generally only found in mammals. Being a vegetarian, this was of interest to me. In addition to what @Beth_B said about their appeal to bees, the roots can be roasted and brewed like coffee, and is delicious. The young leaves are tasty in salads, and i think it is the flower that dandelion wine comes from (need fact check). They are also cheery little flowers. So, congratulations on your lovely dandelion crop Beth_B and your enjoyment of having them(y) Personally, i think your lawn is lush and lovely.:)
I never knew they were an import... thanks for that info!
My dad hated dandelions in the lawn when i was a kid... He always got fussed when he caught me blowing the seedheads around.:D
I personally like them. Lawn purists would hate my yard because I let the dandelions and violets grow, and I deliberately planted white clover all around.
Now crabgrass and quackgrass on the other hand... :mad:
 
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I harvest dandelion greens before they bloom. I think they are equal to or better than chard or spinach. But they do seem to want to get out of hand
 
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Very informative, @Beverly!

When I was a kid we harvested dandelions greens all the time (before they flower, otherwise the greens are very bitter.) And my mother used to make the coffee substitute from the roots, tastes a bit like chicory.

I have a thick mass of them in the rear of the side yard, I think I'll just leave those ones alone to do their dandelion thing. I'm not close to anyone with a manicured lawn, so I won't piss off any neighbors. :)
 
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I walk along a subdivision trail about 4 to 5 km and have observed that there are no earthworms or snails along the paved paths. The robins are finding a tough time to feed their young this year. I have walked this trial daily for over ten years and the walks were covered with snails and earthworms. It was impossible not to step on some. Each year there was less. Now not one snail and few earthworms. I almost cry walking along the trail.

The city enacted laws about not spraying for dandelions except for lawn care people and golf courses. Those who have the means buy herbicides etc from the USA border towns or hire the lawn care people. It is interesting to see yards side by side and one laced with dandelions and the other completely clear.

Also the city sprays the roads for ice in the Winter and they have a new substance like used grease which makes the road dangerous to drive on. This may be responsible for the mass kill of snails and earthworms. I wonder what the run-off does to aquatic life.

Brantford ON, the city free of earthworms and snails.
 
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That's sad, @Durgan.

You couldn't pay me to live in the sort of uber-manicured upscale subdivisions. The ones where everyone has uniformly green lawns, unimaginitive little groomed to death flower beds and lawn service trucks coming and going spraying poisonous crap everywhere and using those irritating, noisy, fume belching leaf blowers.

Oh sorry, was I ranting? :whistle:

I work in subs like that all the time and feel like little bits of my soul gets sucked out every day! I'd rather live in my messy old downscale neighborhood where there are bugs and birds and weeds, and most folk can't afford the luxury of lawn service people anyway. :)
 

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I like Dandelion Coffee with 2 sugars and I love Dandelion wine :)

Name is a corruption of the french name for the leaves, dent de lion - lion's teeth :)
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I love the small leaves in the spring (my great-grandmother called it spring tonic), and the Goldfinches jump on the seed heads to pull them down to the ground for dinner, SO fun to watch!
 

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@Durgan, that is sad. :cry:



Lawn purists would hate my yard because I let the dandelions and violets grow, and I deliberately planted white clover all around.
Me too! :D My dad hated them, and I tried to keep them out of the yard the first year I was here but now I let them go. I do dig out some of the dandelions, the ones that are in the usual "wind path" of my garden, I just don't want the seeds blowing in. :( I still have to pull them from the garden, but there's just not as many.



I harvest dandelion greens before they bloom. I think they are equal to or better than chard or spinach.
When I was a kid we harvested dandelions greens all the time (before they flower, otherwise the greens are very bitter.)
:confused: Do you think the flavor change is brought about by the flowering? Or just the size of the leaf? If you wanted to grow them as salad greens, would you be able to take the flowers off to let them get bigger? :unsure:
 
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:confused: Do you think the flavor change is brought about by the flowering? Or just the size of the leaf? If you wanted to grow them as salad greens, would you be able to take the flowers off to let them get bigger? :unsure:[/QUOTE]
I think the bitterness comes with age. Even if the leaves get larger before they flower, they are still bitter.
 
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@Durgan, that is sad. :cry:




Me too! :D My dad hated them, and I tried to keep them out of the yard the first year I was here but now I let them go. I do dig out some of the dandelions, the ones that are in the usual "wind path" of my garden, I just don't want the seeds blowing in. :( I still have to pull them from the garden, but there's just not as many.





:confused: Do you think the flavor change is brought about by the flowering? Or just the size of the leaf? If you wanted to grow them as salad greens, would you be able to take the flowers off to let them get bigger? :unsure:
I think the bitterness begins when the flower stalk starts to grow. I always pick them when they first start showing up in my garden, before the stalk gets going.
 
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