American poet Ella Wilcox said a weed is but an unloved flower. This is so true.
Dandelions have popped up throughout our neighborhood, bright buttons of yellow growing in clumps near fences and sidewalks. I kinda like dandelions. To me, they are one of the first signs of Spring.
My sister and I couldn’t wait to be big enough to mow the yard. Once the day finally came, that John Deere riding mower became ours until we left for college. Of course the excitement quickly wore off as the summer sun baked our vast yard. The grass grew fast, probably because it was mostly weeds—dandelions, henbit and those pale pink flowers that look like lacy cups. Sometimes we left patches of dandelions in the side yard because they were so pretty. Daddy didn’t much like that…
If you look closely, dandelions are not that different from mums. Or asters. Or daisies. Only easier to grow…
Why not celebrate the hardy dandelion? Instead we make things difficult, wrestling with prissy flowers that may or may not survive.
The happy go lucky dandelion asks for nothing except to be left alone to grow and spread. If we pay attention, they will even predict the weather—open and fluffy during a stretch of sunny days but shut tight when rain is coming. With leaves that can be used for tea and salad and wine, the dandelion is useful too.
But the very best part…
When the time is right, the flower head transforms into a light white feathery globe, a parachute ready to spread tiny seeds across the land. What other flower miraculously transforms a roadside or abandoned lot or ditch bank into a thousand wishes?
Grace Grits and Gardening
“When life is not coming up roses
Look to the weeds
and find the beauty hidden within them.”