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Dandelion Growing Guide

Dandelion Growing Guide

SHORTCUTS: Ideal Environment, How to Plant, How to Water, Companion Planting, How to Propagate, How to Harvest, Parts Used, Preparations, Uses, Key Constituents, Key Actions, Research.

Information

Taraxacum officinale
FAMILY ASTERACEAE
Dandelion is found worldwide and unfortunately mostly seen as a weed. Every part of the plant is edible and it contains notable amounts of vitamins (more vitamin A than raw carrots!) and minerals including calcium, potassium, iron and manganese. Dandelion is s very old plant, it has many medicinal uses and makes a good companion plant. Related species is T. erythrospermum.

Growing Environment

Ideal Environment 

Dandelion can grow almost anywhere, including pavement cracks, but it thrives in rich moist soil.  It is interesting to see how the plant looks completely different depending on the type of soil and environment it is growing in. Dandelion can grow in full sun or partial shade and in hot summers and cold winters.

How to Plant

How to Plant 

Scatter the seeds on the surface, cover lightly with soil and keep moist.  Dandelion has a habit of coming up where you did not intend it to, it self sows very easily and once you have it in the garden it is likely you will see them coming up everywhere.

Watering

How to Water

Water Dandelion regularly, once a week and up to 4 times a week if it has not been raining.

Companion Plants

Companion Planting 

Dandelion makes a good companion plant because it is said that the taproom brings up nutrients for the shallower rooting plants, and it adds minerals and nitrogen into the soil.  Dandelion also attracts beneficial  insects to the garden.

Here are the Companion Plants by group: Herbs, Flowers, Trees, Vegetables, Berries, Fruit and Mushrooms

How to Propagate

How to Propagate 

Dandelion is a perennial plant and self sows easily so propagation is usually just through seeds, which you can also gather and save for the following season.

Harvest

How to Harvest

You can harvest Dandelion greens and florets throughout the season, all parts can be eaten and roots can be harvested in the autumn of the second year of growth.

Medicinal Plants Parts Used

Parts Used

All parts of the plant is used, roots, young leaves and the florets.

Medicinal Preparations

Preparations

Dandelion leaves are used in salads, sandwiches and teas. The roots are used in some coffee substitutes and the flowers can be used to make wines.  You can also make a root decoction (seen recipes for both hot and cold decoctions), leaf decoction, root and/or leaf tincture.

Plant Uses

Uses

Dandelion is used for disorders of liver and gall bladder, diabetics, skin rashes, eczema, gallstones, metabolic disorders, blood purification, gout and rheumatism, disorders of the spleen, face and eyes and acne.

Constituents

Key Constituents

Sesquiterpene lactones, triterpene steroids, phenolic acids, polysaccharides, carotenoids, protein, sugars, pectin, choline, vitamins, minerals, bitter principle (taraxacin, taraxacerin), inulin.

Key Actions

Key Actions

Leaf: diuretic, choleretic, anti-inflammatory. Root: choleretic, cholagogue, tonic, antirheumatic, bitter, alterative, depurative (3).

Research

Research

In 2012 some researchers in Canada received a grant for studying the cancer fighting properties of Dandelion root tea and it is said to be very effective.


USEFUL LINKS: About the Growing Guides, The Medicine Garden, Companion Plants, Basic Preparations and Plant Constituents. Disclaimer. References.

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