The lowly dandelion. The bane of existence for lawn aficionados. The inexpensive green for foodies. In every gardening book that I have, dandelion is classified as a weed. The only exception are my wild flower and plant guides. They have all sorts of tidbits and positive attributes about these plants. Raw dandelion greens are packed with Vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, ascorbic acid as well as calcium, sodium and potassium. "...the lowly dandelion was so highly regarded as a tonic and general remedy by frontiersmen and early settlers long before the days of vitamin pills." (Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants, Bradford Angier)
I decided to pick some dandelions. They are certainly a beautiful yellow color although looking a little more subdued than usual due to our wet weather conditions. A dandelion flower is comprised of the yellow pedals resting on a verdant cup, composed of slender, pointed, green leaves, a few of which twist backward toward the cylindrical stem. At night or during wet weather, the leaves of the cup lift and cover the gilded petals with their greenery. Their heads are compact and they even have a nice scent reminiscent of marigolds. Wonder why they got such a bad rap? They are prolific, are edible, have medicinal use and are beautiful. According to one source they were intentionally introduced to remind the Europeans of home.
They sit on my desk as a reminder that even though there may be pesky and (seemingly) prolific problems in my life there is always something good about each trouble. The problem may just me, needing to reexamine the situation. I may need to get some perspective on what ails me.
Or, I need to try and take the problem out of context, (e.g. "If this was happening to a friend, what would I suggest or say...") What I think may be an ugly weed may have some beautiful and intricate details. Perhaps the situation is one to help me grow or cause me to be prolific in another way. (e.g. "I am learning patience...")
Dandelions are a terrible weed problem if you don't remove them before they go to seed. What if you picked the flowers before they set seed? Wouldn't that eliminate its spreading? Plus you have the added benefit of a pleasant looking nosegay. How many problems would be eliminated if I "nipped it, or certain behavior contributing to the problem, in the bud"?
What about you? Do you have a prolific and pesky problem in your life? Is it like a dandelion gone to seed- all it needs is a gentle breeze, a slight change in the atmosphere and the problem is multiplied? Is there a way you can embrace the situation? Look at it from another lens or perspective? Can you "nip it in the bud" before things become a total mess? Is there a way you can embrace the beauty of a difficult situation?