Workday Weeds- Dandelion
Workday Weeds is an ongoing project to introduce our common, everyday medicinal "weed" herbs. Hang out with these hard-working herbs and get to know your ground-level medicine better!
Dandelion is such a dear, dear friend.
I know, sacrilege, right??
Really, though, this is an amazing plant. The root makes a fantastic liver tonic. The leaves, a kidney tonic. Notice, those two things go together- build up the strength of the liver and kidneys and you'll purify your blood, which will remove junk from circulating to every cell in your body and bring all sorts of goodies to them, since of course you'll also be digesting and assimilating better!
Folk knowledge says you can use the sap from the flower stems to kill warts, and to make henna-like tattoos. The flowers make a mean wine, and I've read they fritter up nicely too- I have yet to try that but will update when I do. Henriette Kress says the flowers bring joy, which is a lovely gift, and that flower syrup tastes nutty and of vanilla. She also says some other pretty great things about this hardy survivor (as do her commentors!):
The second thing is that where the roots meet the rosette of leaves, the plant produces a dark purple color indicative of oxalic acid. When harvesting, I always remove that bit to prevent unnecessary buildup.
I am amazed at the tenacity this plant shows. Have you seen where she grows?? Out of solid walls, in stones, places where there's barely any soil. And with that cheerful bright yellow smile, at the same time! This tells me something about the strength of her medicine. She gives deep, foundational support to those livers and kidneys, digging way down to anchor their strength and draw up their energy and light.
All in all, though, I love my dandelions and carefully weed around them in my garden. Try it!
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Fun Fact: I'm an herbalist and a movement coach. Not a doctor, or a pharmacist, and not pretending to be one on TV.
This is a public space, so my writing reflects my experiences and I try to stay general enough so it might relate to you. This does not constitute medical advice, and I encourage you to discuss concerns with your doctor. Remember, however, that the final say in your wellness decisions are always yours- you have the power to choose, you are the boss of you.
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