On a not-so-bright, slightly chilly day in April we gathered dandelions… lots and lots of dandelions. It wasn’t to make wishes with their delicate seed heads. It wasn’t to eat their nutritious greens in our salad or stir-fry. We weren’t making Dandelion Wine. We were making JELLY!
We wandered around the blueberry patch with our baskets, as if we were easter egg hunting. Someone would catch a glimpse of bright yellow and call, “I see one!” Usually that “one” had many friends. Pinching off flower heads from the stalk, one picker noticed a sticky, white milky substance coming from the stalk of the dandelion. Dandelions produce latex, which helps with repair when they are cut or broken. That latex has been used to make rubber bands, as a mosquito repellent, and a few years ago a German tire company began trying to make tires from dandelion latex. Dandelions help to break up compact soil with their deep taproots. They are high in vitamins A, C, & K and herbal spring cleansing tonics most often contain dandelion. Wow! So much potential in a little weed.
Our basket was soon so full of bright yellow flowers that the youngest among us could hardly carry it. We made a mental note of the best dandelion patches for next year. AJ made our first batch of Luna’s Trail Dandelion Jelly and we celebrated with a tea party. Dandelion jelly toast, strawberry lemonade, chocolate chip cookies and fresh fruit… Mmmmm! Our resident musician serenaded us on his acoustic guitar and we were thankful that spring has arrived! Maybe you will join us next dandelion season?