Ecology Food Growing Health Practice Wilderness


Last year some Dandelions sprung up in the garden and I was delighted.

Rather than just let nature take its course I thought I would cultivate them. Here are the seeds I gathered last year.

I planted them in seed trays here on the far left. Then transplanted the most successful ones into pots. It was fun doing this with a “weed”.

They bloom very early in the season. This is them at the very start of April. They open in the morning and shut in the evening in a very pronounced way that, familiar as we are with flowers in vases, one tends to forget.

Just as quickly they transform into their “clock” form. This was taken on the 15th April a mere two weeks afterwards.

Heaven in a Wild Flower

Here’s a close-up of the same head which image I’m using as an icon on my email account at the moment.

You can eat Dandelions and they are supposed to be good for you. I tried the yellow flower heads and the leaves. They taste ok but they might benefit from some vinaigrette.

One of my very earliest childhood memories was of eating Dandelion stalks. These are hollow tubes which you can split open and flatten out. Never did me any bloody harm I can tell you.

This photo, taken today on May the 5th shows how quickly the season is over. Perhaps they will flower again this year?

Again, I gathered some seeds. [David Attenborough VO:] And so the cycle repeats itself.

Rock nerds will know that Dandelion was the name of John Peel’s record label. Peel may have been aiming for the same free-wheeling, raggle-taggle vibe that characterises the plant but apparently the name came from one of his hamsters at the suggestion of his then flat-mate Marc Bolan.