July 23, 2019

Parachute Ball

Taraxacum officinale - Dandelion

Faith Pineo Photo - Taraxacum officinale - Dandelion

We at Garden Maine aren’t big on lawns, which is why we delight in the sunny blooms of dandelions turning that expansive canvas into a joyous burst of color each springtime. While too many people look at the plant as the enemy, dandelions, or Taraxacum officinale, boast a treasure-trove of goodness. According the University of Maryland Medical Center, “Dandelion is a rich source of vitamins A, B complex, C, and D, as well as minerals such as iron, potassium, and zinc.” It also has been used medicinally in many cultures to treat a variety of problems, including kidney disease, stomach problems, liver and gallbladder problems, and as a diuretic. Dandelion comes from the French “dent-de-lion” or lion’s tooth. And parachute ball? That’s the term to describe the dandelion seed head, with its seed-bearing parachutes just waiting to take flight.