On my daily outings around my neighborhood I've been seeing a great proliferation of them where I haven't seen them in springs past.
Still, for the first time I can recall, I'm seeing an awful lot of dandelions around,
Have this spring's the cool temperatures and overabundance of rain resulted in the propagation of a line of super dandelions gifted with an immunity to chemical weed-killers?
Or is something else going on?
A few days ago during my daily afternoon one-around-the-neighborhood with my mate,
We stopped to compliment her (from a social distance, of course) on her garden and during the course of the conversation I asked her about the dandelions, not just in her yard, but in yards all around. She shared that she'd stopped using chemical lawn treatments a couple of years ago out of concern for the environment and had subsequently been pulling up the dandelions herself.
"But this year," she said, "I've changed my thinking on dandelions, too. I'm guessing maybe other people are starting to change their thinking about lawn chemicals and dandelions. Aren't dandelions supposed to be edible and pretty nutritious?"
I, too, had heard tell that dandelion greens were edible, however whether it was true or hearsay I did not know. So I looked up the subject online and here's what I learned from a website called Money Crashers:
"This innocuous “weed” is actually one of the most nutrient-dense plants you can eat. It blows superfoods like spinach and kale out of the water. Everything, from the flower all the way down to the roots, is edible. And, dandelions also happen to be delicious. The taste of dandelion resembles a slightly bitter green like arugula. You can eat them fresh in salads, or cook them on the stove."
"one half cup of dandelions contain more calcium than a glass of milk, and more iron than spinach. One cup of dandelion greens contains 19 mg of Vitamin C, and the leaves contain more Vitamin A than carrots. And if you need some Vitamin K in your life, there’s no better source than dandelion leaves; 55 mg of leaves contain a whopping 535% of your daily value.
Dandelions are also chock full of other essential minerals such as potassium, folic acid, and magnesium." However, we humans might not want to start chowing down too heartily on dandelions, as, according to the website phys.org:
"They (dandelions) are becoming very important as a food source for domestic and wild species of bees, particularly in early spring because they grow so soon. Butterflies and moths also feed on them as a source of sugar, and some species of birds feed on dandelion seeds"
Which I'm thinking I just might; as we've never been aficionados of chemical lawn treatments the dandelions have always had the run of our yard.