What do you think – are dandelions a delight or a dilemma? Are there any benefits at all from this scruffy, little weed? Could these bright, beautiful, yellow blooms be of harm? Let us explore this. Perhaps along our way we may find comparisons to the companions of joy and sorrow.
Delight in Dandelions
Amazingly, dandelions are quite a plant. Not only can the green leaves be consumed, but also the roots and the blooms! A detoxifying tea can be made with the roots. It is said to be good for the liver. The greens can make a contrasting flavor in a nutritious green salad. Granted, both the tea and the leaves are quite bitter tasting.
One time when we were growing up, my brother and I ended up being the only ones at home. We happened to see a tv show that explained how to make a dish with dandelion blossoms. Basically, we made an egg batter, dipped the blossoms into the batter, then fried them. Our kitchen adventure left a pleasant memory in my mind.
Here is a good resource: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/dandelion-benefits. Please note that this resource makes a number of “may” help this and that statements. Among these are potential help for nutrition, anti-inflammatory response, anti-cancer effects, weight loss, management of blood sugar, cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, etc. More than likely, there is a lack of funding for studying natural substances in which corporations do not stand to make a profit. While this plant has low toxicity, it would be good to review the cautionary notes at the end of the health line resource should you choose to try dandelions.
More Dandelion Benefits
As children, we loved to pluck a stem that had gone to seed and blow the seeds to the ends of the earth! Birds love to eat the seeds following lopping off the fly away parachute. Goldfinches seem to be attracted to the first dandelions.
In my magical thinking, I imagined the yellow of the spring dandelions causing the brown and winter-weary goldfinches to turn yellow. In actuality, it is the lengthening days which contribute to the birds’ golden color.
Another childhood memory of dandelions is creating jewelry from the stems. Once a cheery flower is picked, pluck off the bloom. Note that the remaining lengthy stem is hollow with one end larger than the other. One simply pokes the smaller end into the larger to create a ring. Subsequent stems may be joined onto the ring to fashion a chain necklace. It makes endless outdoor fun!
Dilemma of Dandelions
Many folks consider dandelions unsightly, particularly once they go to seed. Some choose to spray poison in order to halt their growth. For those who love a pristine, green lawn, the envy of their neighbors, dandelions are not their best friends.
Joy and Sorrow Connections
Let’s look at a few quotes on the opposites of joy and sorrow to see if we may find some commonalities with our dandelions!
- He who has not looked on Sorrow will never see Joy. Kahil Gibran
- Our sadness and sorrows, joys and triumphs bind us in the common thread of humanity. The sooner we realize the connection, the more elevated life becomes. Oprah Winfrey
- The walls we build around us to keep sadness out also keeps out the joy. Jim Rohn
- When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy. When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight. Kahil Gibran
So, do dandelions bring you delight or dilemma, joy or sorrow? It is a choice. I must think. I look to nature and contemplate a precious rose with prickly thorns; delicious rhubarb sheltered by its poisonous leaves. I still note the dilemma, the prickles, the poison. However, I need the delight, the preciousness, the deliciousness. I make my choice. Yes, I certainly do feel sorrow and yet…. I choose to revel in the delight of the dandelions, the beauty of the rose, the delicacy of the rhubarb.
Just as we can look at dandelions in a positive or a negative manner, the same can be true for how we approach grief. Grief may ebb and flow with the passage of time. The passing of our son has been the most difficult grief I’ve ever experienced. I certainly still feel the sorrow, but I choose to feed the joy. I treasure my heart-felt joy in my memories of him, of the signs and dreams as well as my anticipation for the yet-to-be-known times of eternity with our beloved son. God bless.
Here is further exploration of what we can Learn from Opposites.
2 thoughts on “Dandelions – Delight or Dilemma?”
Hi Linda, what a timely article for me here in Southeast Alaska! The dandelions are a bumper crop this year. Yes, they are homely but I love them! Have you tried dandelion jelly? It has a delicate flavor and is beautiful to look at: a very clear, very pale, gold.
Hi Evelyn, I’m so glad this article is timely for you! I have not had the pleasure of trying dandelion jelly. It sounds like a fun and delightful treat!