Why do the Joneses kill? In this neighbourhood, to keep up with ’em you gotta become a killer.
A dandelion killer.
Did you know that, if those of us of European descent who immigrated to North America really wanted dandelion-free lawns, the choice could have been ours, way back when? That’s right folks, the dandelion, aka Taraxacum officinale, is not native to North America. It was brought here. And it is believed that it was brought here intentionally.
That raises a lot of questions from the Joneses.
“What would them goddamn settlers want with a dirty old weed?”
I find sometimes we can learn a lot from looking at things from a child’s perspective. When a child sees a field of dandelions, they don’t see weeds, they see flowers.
When I look at a field of dandelions, I see wine, coffee, and salad leaves.
When the Persians living around 900 A.D. saw them, they saw pharmaceuticals.
Maybe that’s why the etymology of the Latin name, Taraxacum officinale, breaks down into medicinal bitter herb.
With respect to the potential medicinal effects, here is a link to a website with thirteen potential benefits.
If I may, could I draw your attention to Benefit Number 9 – May Fight Cancer.
Once logic breaks down, I break down, and now I’m having a breakdown. If anyone can explain to me the logic of using RoundUp (a known cancer causing chemical) to kill a flower (that may actually fight cancer) I am all ears.
There’s good news. If you like a beautiful, uniform, golf-green lawn and you want to get the benefits from a flower that the immigrants to North America brought here on purpose, you can have your cake and eat it too.
Simply get off your ass and use a forked tool to pop those pesky yellow flowers out of the lawn, roots and all. Side effects may include exercise and fresh air. Then use those dandy dandies for any one of the myriads of home remedies or recipes available on the internet.
Here’s one I have made in the past (don’t do this if you have already been spraying RoundUp):
Pull out as many of those dandelions as you can. Chop the roots off. Save the leaves for a dandelion salad. Put the roots in a strainer and wash them well. Use a scrub brush to get all the dirt off. Pull all the tiny, hair-like roots off. We just want the big pieces. Chop the big roots into, let’s say 1/4″ chunks. Let them dry and then spread them over a baking sheet. Turn on your oven to 400 degrees. Toast them for 30 minutes. Individual results may vary, depending on your oven, but the goal is to get the pieces dry and toasted, but not burnt. If you have a food dehydrator, you may be able to use this to accomplish the same thing. My Dehydrator Bible has an entry for dandelion greens, but not the roots.
Once you have the dried pieces, you can use a variety of different steeping/percolating techniques to make tea/coffee. I once zipped the pieces through a coffee grinder and put them in a drip coffee maker. The possibilities are endless.
So if you must be a dandelion killer, why not kill them in the most humane way possible? You might avoid poisoning your pets and children at the same time.