Facts about dandelions
“The only difference between a flower and a weed is judgement”
I have always been passionate about the natural world, animals, and all living beings since I was a little girl. I fondly remember raising hedgehogs, birds, and even toads in my parents garage – in fact, I had a burning desire to become a vet. Fascinatingly, my interest in ethology and animal behaviour led me to learn more about human behaviour…
After years of introversion, I have come to the accept that we are social beings, we need our community – or tribe – and we ultimately belong to nature. The reality of today, however, is that people have never been so disconnected with one another despite us living in such an advanced digital age with technology rapidly progressing. The COVID situation has certainly accelerated this disconnect that we experience and has shone the spotlight on the need for human beings to reconnect with nature.
Dandelions are among the most familiar plants in the world and, quite possibly, the most resilient plants that exist – genuine masters of survival worldwide. Incredibly, dandelion leaves have a great ability to penetrate through hard surfaces like gravel and cement, and are known to thrive in barren habitats.
Although the dandelion – that yellow flower that turns into a puffable white ball – may be a weed to some, there are many benefits of having dandelions in your garden. Birds, bumble bees, butterflies, beetles and a host of other beneficial insects all look to the dandelion as a source of nourishment in early spring. The sad part is that when those dandelions are sprayed with chemicals, it can have serious and fatal consequences on a whole other ecosystem. Considering this, it’s abundantly clear that all living being are intrinsically connected.
Symbolically, it’s a sign of adaptation and resilience – an invitation to people to embark on a journey of healing, and to rediscover themselves and the world around them. By taking inspiration from the determination of a dandelion, people are able to shift perspective and see the world though new lenses – without judgement. Be curious, observe, listen….
The dandelion symbolises the sun (its golden head), the moon (the puffy white seed), and the stars (when they blow to the winds) – a key reason as to why so many people associate it with making a wish. Moreover, dandelions are globally recognised as the symbol for happiness, simple joys, good companions and the presence of our inner child who often forgets to play – telling signs that life is meant to be fun, light and adventurous.
In essence, a dandelion shows us the importance of being grounded and having good foundations in life – key ingredients for growth, equanimity and self-love.
Dandelions are composed of hundreds of tiny flowers – in and of itself, a little community. In a similar light, Nature Connexion is a community of like-minded people wanting to make a difference by supporting one another as well as others.
Before and after embarking on one of our retreats or workshops, Nature Connexion offers support and follow-ups. Our participants’ journey begins at home, is explored in Southern Africa, and then continues with its development once they return to familiar surroundings.
Essentially, those who participate join the retreat to ask questions, find answers, start on a new journey or keep on growing with their current one – Nature Connexion, in effect, is the connector, incubator, vector, and accelerator of this process.
Since the Dandelion can thrive in difficult conditions, it’s no wonder that people say that the flower symbolises the ability to rise above life’s challenges. The dandelion flower’s message is “do not give up”.
The dandelion is a HUMBLE plant – one that perfectly illustrates that transformation requires humility. The first stage to your incredible journey is crucial – so step out of your comfort zone, come on a safari and transform your life while on a retreat or workshop with Nature Connexion !
Did you know these facts about dandelions?
Dandelions are exceptionally fast growers with the sunny yellow flowers transforming from bud to seed in just a matter of days. They have a remarkably long lifespan with individual plants often living for years on end.
In addition, their roots sink deeper as the years pass, driving into the earth as much as 15 feet – amazing ! With that being said, it’s quite conceivable that the dandelion lurking at that corner of the playground is older that the happy-go-lucky children nonchalantly running past it.
Dandelion have been used for years to fight everything from cholesterol to aging to high blood sugar ?
The plant is a perennial herb and is one of the oldest herbs that is used for food and healing – before even the Roman times – and every part of a dandelion is edible, from the root to flower. Their young leaves are often used to add flavour to salads and teas, and they’re full of vitamins (A, B, C, D) and minerals, iron, calcium, potassium, and zinc.
They contain more protein than spinach and their roots are used in some coffee substitutes. If that wasn’t enough, their flowers have powerful antioxidant properties and can also be used to make beer and wine – there’s something for everyone when it comes to dandelions !
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