Dandelion, most common in the northern climates, is prevalent
throughout both rural and urban settings. Easily identifiable by its
yellow flower and uniquely shaped leaves, the dandelion does have
several characteristics that make it a useful plant, even though those
living in an urban environment find it to be nothing but a nuisance.
The Dandelion has a thick taproot that is dark in color on the outside,
white and milky on the inside. Its leaves are shiny and jagged, and
constructed to gather and direct moisture to the center of the plant,
thus keeping it well watered. The Dandelion flower is sensitive to
changes in the weather, thriving and reaching for the sky in direct
sunlight, closing itself up when raining and with the dew of the night.
As the flower matures, one day in the sun and with a light breeze, the
blossom turns a fluffy, silky white, full of seeds and releases them
into the surrounding environment, only to compound the problem.
small birds favor the seeds of the Dandelion, and bees are provided
with plenty of pollen and nectar from the flowers in the early spring.
Young Dandelion leaves can be used in salads, and of course many are
finding dandelion wine a tasty beverage.
of Dandelions is considered to be easy. Chemical control with a
broadleaf herbicide will generally eliminate the problem in one to two
applications. Proper cultural practices will ensure future control
without the use of chemicals. A lawn that is fertilized on a regular
basis, watered weekly and cut at a mowing height of 2 ½ to 3
inches will create a lawn that is thick and vigorous, thus preventing
the germination of Dandelions and other weeds.