Monday, January 4th, 2010...12:00 am

Dandelion: The Unappreciated Medicinal Warrior

Sinfonía de cristal (Taraxacum officinale) - Dandelion by Arbego

With the dawn of a new year and the approach of spring this is the perfect time to do some internal spring cleaning. Clearing out the buildup of winter feasts is a great way to jump start your system and ensure optimal health.

Dandelion - All Things must pass by Batikart

TheGardenLady has invited people with horticultural interests and expertise to contribute posts to this blog.  The following post  was submitted by Christy Baker, a certified Family Herbalist and Consulting Herbalist.   Christy is currently pursuing a certificate in Horticulture Therapy and a second Master’s in Landscape Architecture.

With a 30 million year history originating in Eurasia, Dandelion, Taraxacum Officinale, was once revered for its healing properties. Today however, most people think of it as a brightly colored nuisance, especially gardeners; the self fertilizing herbaceous plant does a very good job evading eviction. Instead of relentlessly fighting the Dandelion, try embracing its presence, for as many herbalists and naturalists know this small unassuming plant is a nutritious wonder.

~ dandelion parachutist ~ by Licht~~~~

Dandelion, adapted from the Old French Dent de Lion meaning lion’s tooth due to its deeply serrated leaves, is packed root to tip with nutritional value. Its leaves, best eaten before the appearance of flowers in early spring and after the first frost, are high in beta carotene, iron, calcium an vitamins B2, B5, B6, B12, C, E, P & D. It’s taproot is edible year round and is said to be the most potent component of the whole flower. The root promotes kidney and liver health, reduces swelling of the liver, is an effective treatment for jaundice and chronic hepatitis; an additional benefit is that it helps the kidneys improve their blood cleaning efficiency and nutrient recycling abilities. The milky sap found in the leaves has been claimed to remove warts, pimples, callouses, sores and is useful in treating bee stings and blisters.

Please. Do Not Sneeze. by .: Philipp Klinger :.

For those adventurous souls who are willing to give the Dandelion its just do there are some cautionary notes to be adhered to. It is important when foraging wild Dandelion to avoid places like waste dumps or the roadside, as well as any area known for using harmful sprays and pesticides.

When it all blows over by davebluedevil

Dandelions are plentiful and may be found in most meadows, grasslands and pastures of the north temperate zone. Side effects are rare however some may experience stomach upset, mild diarrhea, or an allergic reaction. Overall Dandelion is an extremely helpful herb and should be apart of everyone’s spring cleaning ritual.

Spring Seeds by ecstaticist

A tip for gardeners who want to be done with this plant once and for all: be sure to remove the entire tap root whole from the ground, any breakage will result in the return of our unsung hero.

Morning Star by Dragan*

Here are two easy ways to incorporate Dandelion into your diet:

Dandelion Tonic:

Pour 2 cups of boiling water over 2 tbls of Dandelion flowers. Steep covered for 10 minutes, strain and sweeten to taste. Drink 1-2 glasses a day until gone

Dandelion Soup:

• 2 qt. dandelion greens, loosely packed

• 2 qt. chicken soup (any kind)

• 1 lb. ground beef

• 1 egg

• 2 Tbsp. bread crumbs

• 2 Tbsp. minced parsley

• 1 Tbsp. minced onions

• 1/4 tsp. salt

• 1/8 tsp. pepper

• dash of nutmeg

• 3 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese

• 2 Tbsp. sour cream

1. Bring chicken soup to a boil.

2. Add dandelions.

3. Cook gently.

4. Rice or fine noodles can be added (1/2 cup rice or 1 cup noodles).

5. Make tiny meat balls out of remaining ingredients.

6. When greens are tender, add meatballs and cook gently 10 minutes or until meatballs are thoroughly cooked

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1 Comment

  • I am hoping to contact Carolyn Walker. Carolyn, this is a lovely blog, and I’m glad to see you prospering. Dave Sherman posted a composite photo of Psi U folks from 1974 on Facebook, you’re on it, and I’d love to send you a copy of it, but I don’t have an email address for you. There’s a group of about 16 of us on Facebook, and it’s great fun to hear from everybody. If you’re interested, please send me an email at Best to you and yours.

    Dave Larsson

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