Your mom and dad probably aren’t crazy about the things. They pace the lawn, deadly spray bottle in hand, shooting each bright-yellow spot in the carpet of green. Others simply mow down the little weedy pests, chopping off their golden heads before they can spread seed. Still others dig in a vain effort to remove the entire root so the pesky plant won’t grow again.
Dandelions are the «curse» of the urban landscape. City officials complain about them, and homeowners go to great lengths to get rid of them. Most people see them as nothing more than a common, worthless weed. But not everyone.
Dandelions are a multimillion-dollar crop industry in Texas, Florida, Arizona, California, and New Jersey. Most get used in the restaurant business.
A serving of dandelion leaves has almost 300 percent of the daily requirement of vitamin A, more than half the requirement of vitamin C, protein, phosphorus, iron, potassium, thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, and magnesium.
The dandelion’s botanical name (Taraxacum officinale) means «official remedy for disorders.» It improves liver function and lowers cholesterol and blood pressure. Also it stimulates urine production. Health food stores sell dandelion juice for making tea (one teaspoon to one cup of warm water).
As early as 1200 B.C. people were eating dandelions. The inhabitants of Europe and Asia have had them on the menu for at least 1,000 years.
God doesn’t put anything on earth without a purpose. Every part of the dandelion can be eaten, from leaves and flowers to roots. Explore the possibilities of dandelions. Then eat your weedies!