The dandelions are popping up all over a field near my house as spring finally makes an appearance here in the Midwest. On the less tended lawns of my neighborhood, the profusion of cheerful yellow gladdens me.
Why are dandelions considered weeds, plants that need to be eradicated with toxic chemicals? They look so lovely, at least until they go to seed. Even then, the fuzzy grey tops are fun to blow on and scatter. And you can even make wine out of dandelions!
Walking around our yard with an expert in horticulture, my husband and I will point to plants and ask, “Is that a weed?” I sometimes feel that if you have to ask, maybe you should just leave it be.
As in other areas of culture, deciding what makes a beautiful or desirable plant is sometimes in the eye of the beholder. For instance, we have a Japanese maple in our front yard that my hubby despises. But one would hardly call it a weed. I realize that some plants take over and kill grass or other plants. So I understand why you might want to get rid of such weeds. And truth be told, the foliage of the lowly dandelion is nothing to write home about.
Still, after a long hard winter, I am ready to welcome just about any growing thing around my yard and my neighborhood. Even the cheeky dandelions.