• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

in praise of the dandelion

 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19864
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've been out of town for a while.

During my travels, I had the opportunity to drive into some really beautiful country.  Looking for morels and a little wildcrafting ... 

We drove by a field packed with dandelions and somebody commented that that was far too many dandelions - somebody should do something.

I dunno. 

As time passes I find that I like the dandelion more and more.  I like to blow on the puff balls.  I like the look of the flower.  I like a few of the tender, young greens in my salad.  From a permaculture perspective it seems like a first class plant:  deep tap root, quick to establish and provide cover, fantastic animal feed ...  I suspect that it is a fantastic guild plant for nearly all trees

I wonder if a fruit tree would be happier with a bunch of dandelions under it than a bunch of grass. 

So ... back to the drive ...  I didn't say anything.  But, I thought, what if some critters were in there?  Cows or pigs or chickens ....  I bet they would gobble up the dandelions first.  And the dandelions would probably be super good for them.  And then there would be hardly any dandelions.  And you could encourage children to collect the dandelion puff balls that they do find and blow them on the pastures so there could be more dandelions .... 

Just some odd thoughts ...

 
Kelda Miller
Posts: 769
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Agreed: dynamic accumulator which is a low-maintenance medicinal and ornamental herb.

I love dandelions mostly for their roots: I dry the root to use as a tea, or I dry and then roast it for a coffee-like substitute. I'm more inclined for the tea though, and would be quite happy drinking a cup of it each morning for the rest of my life. It's a gentle tonic, so it won't hurt my body to have tea to that extent. It's good for the liver which means its good for lots of things: detox, healthy skin, radiant health.

Num.

I actually didn't dry enough of it last fall (the best time for harvest), so am now wondering what I'll do when it runs out. Harvest some summer stuff I guess, which is not so robust. Oh well.
 
Arthur Lee Jacobson
author
Posts: 23
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here is what I wrote about dandelion in my book on page 298:

Common Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale s.l.). Common dandelion is a perennial from Europe. In the minds of many, it is the premier weed, even as we deem oak king of the forest, lion king of beasts, and eagle greatest of birds. It has been praised in poetry, played with by children, eaten as a vegetable, employed medicinally, made into wine, extracted for use as commercial flavoring, and been subjected to vast amounts of study and literature. Common dandelion has strikingly adaptable biology. In this respect, it is like humans. It grows in a remarkable variety of sites, holds strong resurrective power, and reproduces prodigiously.

The chief display of fresh leaves and bright flowers comes in April. The largest, healthiest specimens in full bloom are marvelously sumptuous. In 1980, a flowerstem from this author’s garden grew over 38 inches high. The valuable properties to herbalists include: laxative, cholagogue, diuretic, stomachic, and tonic. All parts are edible raw or cooked. Its bitterness is more bearable by our remembering to eat the plant in earliest spring; to use its parts in mixtures of greens rather than as a single dish; and to reflect on the extra-high levels of vitamin A and calcium. Dandelion is corrupted from the French dent de lion, which is from the Latin, dens leonis—“teeth of the lion.” Other old English names include: blowball, puffball, irish daisy, piss-a-bed, crow parsnip, and monk’s head.

Arthur Lee Jacobson
 
                            
Posts: 13
Location: Whidbey Island, Washington
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi,
Right now the dandelion leaves are very thick and fully of bitter richness.
It is a very good time to pick these leaves, to make tincture, vinegar and dry them. 
The leaves are also good for our livers and lymphatic system.

Here is a link to my blog where I tell the story of how to make dandelion root vinegar, which also includes photos.  http://crowsdaughtersherbs.blogspot.com/2008/01/dandelion-has-been-potent-ally-of-mine.html


Peace, Julie
 
              
Posts: 133
Location: West Iowa
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I like eating dandelion flowers.  I have video link of eating some things that included dandelion flower. 
 
Steve Nicolini
Posts: 224
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There is a reason why dandelions grow in human settlements.  We're supposed to use them!  Edible roots (cooked of course), edible leaves added to salads or cooked, and edible flowerheads (fry em up with butter and have some fritters).  Also, the buds, when boiled, are a brussels sprout substitute.  All that medicine too.  Full of vitamin A.  Remember to only harvest from lawns NOT sprayed.
 
Susan Monroe
Posts: 1093
Location: Western WA
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A farmer on Prince Edward Island is growing dandelions for the root, which is harvested and used in Japan as a coffee substitute and diuretic.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2008/06/23/dandelion-japan.html

And there is a very interesting comment (the first one) under this article:  http://www.cbc.ca/consumer/foodbytes/2008/07/dandelions_come_full_circle.html

Sue
 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19864
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
lkz5ia wrote:
I like eating dandelion flowers.  I have video link of eating some things that included dandelion flower. 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T35Snp-dffA


lkz5ia,

You're not just eating anything, right?  You are knowingly eating edibles and skipping the toxic stuff, right?
 
              
Posts: 133
Location: West Iowa
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
yep, I forgot to put the warning:  I'm a professional, do not try these stunts at home without proper identification of the plants.
 
Kelda Miller
Posts: 769
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Another great thing I just learned from reading Susun Weed's "Healing Wise": While growing, dandelions exhale ethylene gas, which can slow down growth of nearby plants, BUT, in an orchard, will ripen fruit evenly and early.

So, that's a great orchard plant. Dynamic Accumulator, Benefical Insect Attractor, Medicinal, Edible, Fruit Ripening Ally
 
                                                    
Posts: 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
This made me smile, on our smallholding we claim to be experts at growing nettles. Sometimes, particularly in spring, it is almost impossible to walk anywhere without getting badly stung

However, a couple of seasons ago I started picking and eating the nettles. I have a favourite spot behind the compost bin, just next to the driveway into the house. Last year, I got all excited when the first tender nettle shoots started to grow. Today, as I read your dandelion post I knew exactly how you felt. My mouth is watering in anticipation. Nettles taste so much better than any spinach I have ever tried.

So perhaps the Permaculture motto, of  'on't Petition pass a peach' should  really be 'Learn to love your weeds - eat them?'

- permaculturebella
 
Steve Nicolini
Posts: 224
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I like it.  There is a nettle patch just outside my window.  I am twisting up some nettle rope.  I have about twenty feet now, and still working.  It is mighty strong.  The leaves make good tea as well.

Another function of the dandelion is suppressing grass.  That is why all the wonderbread picket fencers hate them!
 
                  
Posts: 27
Location: Seattle
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Don't forget that BioDynamic Practice utilizes both the dandelion and the nettle in their BioDynamic Preparations.  Some treat these like hocus pocus and talk in Pseudo-Mystical tones about the "Aligning of Forces" when speaking of these preparations but I am of the opinion that these little fermented concoctions (there are six classic preparations) pack quite a nutritional punch while simulateously adding to the diversity of micro-organizisms in the soil, which, as we learn more and more, are really the big change agents that make nutrients available to plants.  By design, these preparations are to be made with materials available on most "farmsteads" (though they do seem biased to the use of animal parts for sheaths in which they are barried in the ground for "seasoning" and "conditioning".  For those who don't find the prescribed plants present on their land, they are encouraged to bring them on board thereby adding to biodiversity, etc.  No extra expense need be involved--just a bit of labor to collect the ingrediants, some work to prepare them, and some mediative mixing before sprinkling or spraying them on your plants or soil.  I'm still learning about them myself but there are those who suggest that they have made a huge difference in the health of their plants and the flavor and nutritional value of their produce in addition to making a significant contribution to the furtility of their soil generally.
 
Ryan Lenz
Posts: 32
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dan-
Thanks for bringing up the biodynamic use of dandelion.  I think your take on the benefits of biodynamics is spot on.  Lots of excessive ritual involved, but underneath it all, it makes (some) solid organic sense.  The explanations seem to be a bit antiquated (and the literature can be almost dogmatic...), and I wish the whole Steiner movement would go through a sort of 'scientific' or 'rational' revolution.  From what I understand, biodynamic doesn't seem to outperform conventional organic practices.

On another note,  I'm curious how chicken tractors change the balance of ground covers.  After a couple of hard weeks of scratching, pecking, etc., do people see an increase in grass species, broadleaves, or others?  Maybe there is little net effect?

Fried dandelions....heehee...awesome.  Tomorrow's appertif

Ryan
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4434
Location: North Central Michigan
10
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i think i noticed 2 dandilion flowers open yesterday and was thinking..ah fritters..so our minds are on the same track.

and yes..i hve several edible weed id books..so i'm safe as a baby..

love that i can eat off my land enough to survive ..esp if i can or freeze a few "weeds" for the winter..

love it love it love it

(remember I'm the one who sued TruGreen for trespassing on my property and killing the "weeds" in my lawn..and one a weed settlement..not allowed to discuss how much !!)
 
                              
Posts: 262
Location: Coast Range, Oregon--the New Magic Land
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've always thought dandelions were pretty, especially a whole bunch of them.  I was always picking them to give my mom "flowers".

http://fat-of-the-land.blogspot.com/2008/04/dandy-muffins-and-bread.html

I tried this bread recipe and it came out great!!! awesome blog (Fat of the Land), it's a foodie blog for foraging, lots of great recipes. THis bread recipe would be a great starting point for experimenting with other add in's, like maybe mint and lemon balm, lavendar, nuts and cranberries etc.

here is my blog post about making the bread, and how I altered the recipe for using white sugar(the original uses honey and I didn't have any, I'm sure the honey would be wonderful!)
http://dzonoquaswhistle.blogspot.com/2009/04/dandelion-whine.html

 
                  
Posts: 27
Location: Seattle
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ryan,
    I'm curious what your criteria are for saying that "Organic" compares to "BioDynamic."  Are you suggesting that total volume of production is comparable  How do you say they are equal?  Those who espouse BioDynamics suggest that the benefits of BioDynamic production over simple "Organic" are not easily quantifiable--they report improvements in the taste of their produce, for example, or improvements in their general health since eating exclusively BioDynamic produce (as in no more yearly head colds, etc.)  There is also a recent paper in publication that shows that application of BioDynamic preparations helped raise pH in a pasture and raised total gross protein content in the forage as demonstrated by end of season crop analysis when compared to controls.  (We'll have to see if these results are reproducable by others).
      These days, "Organic" can mean anything, really...  If a Horizon Dairy "Feedlot" production farm that milks over 3000 cows can be called "Organic," then to me, anything can be called "Organic"--and to me, a mega-feed lot can't compare to a BioDynamic farm.
    One thing I find attractive about BioDynamic thinking (you're right, one might have to do some version of "translating" in order to draw these conclusions) is their emphasis on the "farm" as "organism"--the "farm" as collection of interdependent systems operating wholistically--sort of like Permaculture Design thinking before Mollison and Holmgren came along and gave us the term "Permaculture" with all of their modern technical advancements and the global information gathering they share (i.e. Vietnamese forest poly-cultures). 
    Some "modern" BioDynamic writers have had nice conversations about the life forms in the soil (micro-organisms) as being serious players in the equation of growing things--something to cultivate and take seriously in one's "esign Thinking."  (Perhaps a parallel to Stamet's discussion of the benefits of Mico-rhyzea. (??)  I think that this is something we could be talking more about--diversity of micro-flora in addition to diversity of observable plant life.  This is perfectly consistent with what I see large commercial greenhouse growers here in the Northwest doing--adding selected cultures of micro-organisms with their plant feedings.  These guys don't mess around when it comes to maximizing production.  And seriously--they'll be glad to sell you their "tested" applications of innoculants to add to your plant feed.  Why not just brew your own with Dandelion and nettle, etc. right on your own land--a la historic BioDynamic practice

Dan
 
                                      
Posts: 4
Location: Rural Pierce County, Washington
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dandelions!   

My favorite flower.      Lotta big words and concepts talked about in this thread, which I know very little about...  but I do know that dandelions make a wonderful wine!  I once made some sparkling dandelion wine that was perfect!!

-Ray
 
Kathleen Sanderson
Posts: 985
Location: Near Klamath Falls, Oregon
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
doughpat wrote:


On another note,  I'm curious how chicken tractors change the balance of ground covers.  After a couple of hard weeks of scratching, pecking, etc., do people see an increase in grass species, broadleaves, or others?  Maybe there is little net effect?

Fried dandelions....heehee...awesome.  Tomorrow's appertif

Ryan


I normally only leave my chicken tractors in one spot for about 24 hours (with a few exceptions, depending on how busy I am, or if there's snow on the ground, in which case they stay put).  Moving the chicken tractors fairly rapidly like that seems to encourage grass to grow, not broadleaved plants.  I'll have to pay more attention, though.  I can tell you that the spots where my tractors sat for several weeks at a time last winter still don't have anything growing in them (heavy crust of chicken poop and bedding there), but around the edges of those spots, growth is extremely lush and green.

Kathleen
 
                              
Posts: 461
Location: Inland Central Florida, USA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm not really set up for chicken tractor operation but I re-arrange the extended chicken run for the girlz often.  Like I put the little garden netting around a section of my garden with the pumpkins one day to let the girls search for bugs, weeds and seeds one day but didn't want to let them in there too much because they are a bit hard on the plants even if they were not trying to eat them.  Currently I have the extended run stretched out over some pretty barren ground with only scrubby grass and lots of leaves.  They love digging through the mulch and leaves especially where it is moist and bugs are plenty. 

The chickens make really good little tillers and the soil is well fluffed and aerated by them.

As to the dandelion, I do wish they grew here but all I seem to get this time of year is the prickly lettuce which really doesn't compare.
 
                  
Posts: 27
Location: Seattle
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
An interesting bit of info I heard lately...  It seems that chicken manure--even properly composted chicken manure--can have excessive levels of Boron.  Boron is one of the micronutrients that plants need in order to be at their best, but there is also the possibility that Boron levels can get too high and plants can suffer.  This information came from a commercial grower who conducts frequent laboratory testing of his growing areas.  A serious greenhouse grower like this fellow (degrees in plant physiology, etc.) will test their soil conditions before preparing beds.  They will also send samples of their compost to the lab for testing so that they know what they are putting on/in their soil.  They will also test after the crop is harvested--making comparisons--before the nest crop is planted.  One fellow relayed the story that he relied heavily on chicken manure compost one year and this led to problems with his crop--as in, it died.  Subsequent testing demonstrated highly elevated Boron levels--consisted with the damage he observed in his crop.  It seems that chicken physiology seems to result in high concentrations of Boron in chicken manure.  This is especially true with certain feeds.
    This is just a bit of crazy info to file away somewhere...  or to research further...  I have no personal experience with this--this is second hand information.
 
                              
Posts: 461
Location: Inland Central Florida, USA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
it would be interesting to know which chicken feeds are more likely to cause elevated boron levels and also what part of the world this situation was in since feeds from soils with excess boron may have the problem but the same type of feed in another part of the country may not have the boron build up.
 
                  
Posts: 27
Location: Seattle
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
TCLynx,
    This situation occurred here in the Northwest.  I understand that Eastern Washington--East of the mountains, has soils that are generally deficient in boron so to grow healthy forage crops (alfalfa, timothy hay, etc.), "pastoral" farmers (those who graze livestock or make hay) often spread boron as an amendment, perhaps at the same time that they "Lime."  If this hay crop is brought west of the mountains by those who buy hay (many farmers who feed stock during the winter here on the west side), the boron is available in the feed--not an usual thing.  Our soils here, west of the Cascades, I'm told, do not generally have a boron deficiency.  What is interesting to consider is the idea that chickens don't use much boron in their bodies--hence the abundance of secreted boron in their manure.  Chickens who "graze" or are feed forage will naturally be ingesting boron in trace amounts, as we probably all do.  Again, Boron is one of those "trace" elements that most plants need small amounts of in order to thrive. 
    Again, I find this to be something interesting but not necesarily something that one would need to worry about, unless one relied exclusively on chicken manure for composting and soil enrichment and there began to be problems with plants--decreased growth, etc.  How many years would it take to raise one's boron levels to critically high levels  Boron would probably leach out of the soils here during the rainy season anyway ().  This was a situation that became apparent probably because it was in a greenhouse environment--no "rain" to leach the boron during the winter unless someone turned on the faucet...

Note:  The ticket to the Bullock's weekend workshop in June is to be awarded after 18 May.  I'm just making entries about things that I hope are interesting so that I keep increasing my chances of having one of my entries included in the run-off/drawing.  I'm running out of things that I can comment on...  This thread raised the idea of grazing chickens on dandalions.  I was reminded of this little tidbit of increased boron in chicken manure--something that one doesn't hear anything about until you meet "big time" commercial growers who can afford to watch and attempt to manipulate every detail of crop production.

Thanks,
  Dan
 
Kathleen Sanderson
Posts: 985
Location: Near Klamath Falls, Oregon
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That was interesting about the boron.  Thanks for posting that.

I have one more observation about chicken tractors.  If the chickens are moved quickly, as with intensively managed grazing of larger species, it seems to encourage grass.  If they are left on one spot for too long, though, they can pretty much kill off the grass, and then you will end up with deep-rooted perennial weeds.  I've got bindweed (wild morning glory, a serious pest here) and dandelions, among other such plants, coming up now in some of the spots where the chicken tractors sat for several weeks at a time in the winter.  (Other spots were heavily bedded with leaves from a friend's lawn, and nothing is coming up there -- I plan to use those spots for onions.)

Kathleen
 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19864
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I recently learned that the blossom is edible!  And it doesn't taste bad either!

 
Jordan Lowery
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
12
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i love dandelions, they are one of my favorite plants. i am often seen spreading dandelion seed all over my food forest. some say i am crazy, but i just laugh and think of how much the little plant does for me.
 
Travis Philp
gardener
Posts: 965
Location: ZONE 5a Lindsay Ontario Canada
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Among all the great things about dandelions, the leaves go for $8-$10/lb round these parts. I haven't found any buyers for the flowers yet but they make great fritters
 
Ardilla Esch
Posts: 198
Location: Northern New Mexico, Zone 5b
5
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Another great thing about dandelions...

They are great early bee forage for nectar and pollen.  Those early flowers are important for the bees coming out of winter with diminished stores of honey and pollen.

For a long time, beekeepers have been using the dandelion bloom as a time marker.  Their bloom marks when it is advisable to start queen rearing, feeding syrup, etc.  Personally, I give my bees as much peace and quiet as I can until the bloom.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dan wrote:It seems that chicken physiology seems to result in high concentrations of Boron in chicken manure.


Hm...before blaming chicken physiology, I would look into the economics of chicken feed production, and before that, to sources of boron related to parasite control among commercial growers.
 
Kirk Hutchison
Posts: 418
Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
  I have always felt sorry for dandelions. They are quite possibly the world's most under-appreciated plant.
 
                                      
Posts: 172
Location: Amsterdam, the netherlands
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
not only bees feed on them.

another important role of (flowers like) dandelions (composites), is that the adult insects, whose larvea eat fruit eating insects, feed on their flowers.

Also you can make wine out of them.
 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19864
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I wonder if there are varieties of dandelion seed available that are especially great permaculture plants.
 
Rebecca Dane
Posts: 211
Location: Missoula Montana
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There are some interesting and yummy recipes using dandelion in Countryside Magazine Sept/Oct 2010.  This versitile plant is highly praised and one can create quite a feast as it grows everywhere!  Recipes include:

Dandelion With Onions
Dadelion and Ceese Appetizer
Scrambld Eggs with Dandelion
Dndelion and Lenti Soup
Dandelion and Cheese Salad
Cored Beef ad Dandelion Salad
Dandelion and Yogurt
Dandelion and Rice
Danelion Pies   
Dandelion Meaballs
and
Danelion Tea
 
                                      
Posts: 39
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Dandelions are in the chicory family and the greens are good for people with respiratory problems, raw in salads of course.
You can buy cultivars to grow for market (Johnny's).
 
                                      
Posts: 39
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Kelda O. wrote:
Agreed: dynamic accumulator which is a low-maintenance medicinal and ornamental herb.


What does it accumulate or does it hyperaccumulate anything, minerals, N, P, K calcium?
I wonder of there is anywhere you can buy seeds of the wild variety.

This is a great thread..
 
tel jetson
steward
Posts: 3356
Location: woodland, washington
75
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
dirtfarmer wrote:
I wonder of there is anywhere you can buy seeds of the wild variety.


seems like it would be difficult to sell something that's so widely available for free.

dirtfarmer wrote:
What does it accumulate or does it hyperaccumulate anything, minerals, N, P, K calcium?


according to this page, dandelions accumulate sodium, silicon, magnesium, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, iron, and copper.
 
Lisa Paulson
Posts: 258
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
When I first moved from the city , I was vexed to pick all the dandelion  on our acreage before they went to seed.  Then one spring day a car stopped and a British tourist asked what all the lovely yellow wildflowers were called.  I laughed as I said they were Dandelion and considered a weed , but ever since that day I decided to just enjoy them .
 
                                      
Posts: 39
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
tel jetson wrote:
seems like it would be difficult to sell something that's so widely available for free.


They are not as abundant as they used to be at my place. I would like to  create
herbal lawns to seed with the wild variety, broadleaf plantain, rattlesnake plantain, clover, mint,
comfrey, maybe a little crabgrass to mow high, ground ivy and anything else
that will coexist without dominating. I probably should plant several raised beds with dandelions.
 
Lisa Paulson
Posts: 258
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
dirtfarmer, as long as you have assessed your present and potential future uses of your land adding more biodiversity is terrific .  I seeded every mole hill with red clover and introduced herbs and medicinal trees  .  I will add a cautionary note here that ground ivy has some level of toxicity ,  certainly to horses.
 
                                      
Posts: 39
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Synergy wrote:
dirtfarmer, as long as you have assessed your present and potential future uses of your land adding more biodiversity is terrific .  I seeded every mole hill with red clover and introduced herbs and medicinal trees  .   I will add a cautionary note here that ground ivy has some level of toxicity ,  certainly to horses.

Its a great catch crop (nutrients) and nice looking ground cover & smells good. I have over three acres fenced in to keep deer out, successfully, and no horses, no other livestock just a cat.
Speaking of biodiversity, I discovered that fire ants know how to Keyline plow too and they need only themselves to do the work.
They cut a highly visible groove across my hard packed drive way with crusher run and crushed rock embedded in it. Over 12 feet long;
never seen anything like it. They had a convoy underway, hauling whatever from the base of a large chimney where their mound was,
across the drive and over the edge and into a big drainage ditch surrounded with lots of weeds and tree seedlings. I Like having them on my property and encourage them any way I can. When tilling a bed I wrecked part of one of their active mounds running across the bed. I restored it by spreading loose dirt over the damaged mound section. In a few weeks they had made the whole thing as good as new and were thriving. They, in addition to dung beetles and worms are Nature's little rototillers.
Here's part of a thread in the permaculture list you may appreciate:
http://permaculturelist.blogspot.com/
<>
There really is a balance of nature, ...
<> DB:
I used to think that this is just a romantic idea. Yet after more than ten years on this land, I come more and more
to the conclusion that this is in fact very true and that all our endeavors will be in vain if we don't understand
this balance of Nature and find ways of living in harmony with Nature.
<> LL:
Interesting to consider that we evolved within Nature. Nature made it possible for us to come into being. It seems that
Nature in balance is the essence of Gaia, a manifestation of Gaia, its need to continue and grow with its component
parts in coexistence, coevolving.
 
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic