Turning up the Heat on Dandelions

12

AUGUST, 2017

DIY
Maintenance

Unless you’re harvesting Dandelions for your lunch, they have no place in your yard and can be quite a nuisance. It’s time we turn up the heat on your Dandelion invasion; be it on your stove, or in the removal.

If you have an infestation of Dandelions, you will know it. Their flat, dark green leaves lay along the ground and a stem stands tall from amongst them. Topped by a yellow flower, or a white afro of seeds, the Dandelion is a distinctive plant we all recognise.

Although a healthy lawn will out-compete the Dandelion, their appearance may mean that your lawn will be robbed of much need nutrients. The main reason Dandelions are such a nuisance is their ability to spread quickly. Their seed heads, the white afros, contain hundreds of seeds that all have their own little parachute. As the wind picks them up they will travel far and wide, grabbing onto pets and clothes before settling down into the rest of your lawn.

Clearing your lawn of Dandelions can be quick, depending on how much they have spread.

If there are only a few, you can try to remove them by hand but you will need to do so carefully. Their root is brittle and easily breaks which mean the Dandelion will simply grow back. It is best to water the lawn first to loosen the soil. Then, run a tool such as a screwdriver down beside the roots and wiggle it back and forth. If the plant doesn’t come when you give it a gentle tug, continue to loosen the soil around it.

Another option is to mow over the weed as the flowers appear. This will stop the Dandelion having the chance to develop seeds and spread.

And, of course, you can use a trusty herbicide such as Lawn Lovers Buffalo Weed Control. Making sure the herbicide won’t harm your lawn, follow the mixing instructions for the application. Make sure that if you have used herbicide on the Dandelions, you don’t change your mind and digest the plant, herbicide along with it.

However, if you do want to try your hand at cooking the Dandelions, there a few different ways you can do it. The root is well known for being roasted and brewed, much like coffee. The leaves of a young plant can be used in a soup, stir-fry or salad but are quite bitter. Boiling them first will reduce this ‘bite’ they bring with them. By harvesting the plant in early spring, before the flower appears, the Dandelion will be rich in vitamin A, vitamin C and iron.

Dandelions may not be for you and they certainly aren’t for your lawn. Whether you decide to harvest or kill the weed, if you love your lawn, you need to make sure you have it all under control.

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