Dandy Dandelions


2014-05-11 – Yesterday the world was awash with dandelions. There were none the day before. They just sprouted up overnight. I noticed them yesterday on my first long bike ride of the season. I love dandelions.

Yeah, I know that we’re supposed to root the suckers out. We once had a gizmo that was designed to do exactly that. You put it over the dandelion and step on it. The blades plunged into the ground and twisted. It was very satisfying, like persecuting Jews or blacks or Mexicans.

But just like the Jews and blacks and Mexicans (or whomever you want to persecute), we were soon back. We, meaning the dandelions. Who did you think I meant?

What is it about dandelions that makes people want to persecute them? They have a beautiful cheery flower. When they go to seed they form a delicate halo of white fluff that fly with the wind. Okay, once the fluff has flown, the remaining husk is sad, but that is life.

They say that once dandelions take root in a lawn they will completely take over. But that is not true. Go into a park where dandelions abound. They never crowd out the grass. They form a happy balance. Green and yellow.

We stopped trying to weed out our dandelions many years ago. And I look forward to their arrival each year as the truest sign of spring.

Of course, we also stopped cultivating grass, too. Oh, we still have some, but we also have shrubs and tall grasses and ground cover. It makes mowing a little complex, but we have a small yard, so it doesn’t take long.

Kit wants to work in the garden today for Mother’s Day. She went out early to visit her sister and I got a jump on things. I took a quick bike ride to the grocery story to pick up some flowers and eggs and orange juice. Then I mowed our small patches of lawn so we can be ready to start with the plantings or whatever it is we’ll do this year. Each year we add something.

We don’t have to add any dandelions, though. They come on their own.

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