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Dandelions, not just a pest

If you haven’t mowed your lawn or fields you may want to give some thought to those small yellow aster-like flowers blooming low to the ground before doing so. But if you have mowed, don’t worry, they’ll be back in the fall.

The quintessential garden/lawn vegetable/weed dandelion, once referred to as a common herb, is quite edible and can be used for many culinary purposes. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, dandelions taste good, are low in calories, and are packed with vitamins.

Dandelions are thought to have originated in Europe and Asia where humans have cultivated them for hundreds of years. The name “dandelion” is a mispronunciation of the French ‘dent de lion,’ which translates to “tooth of the lion.” The tooth of the lion references the dandelion’s leaves, which are serrated and look much like teeth.

Dandelions have been under serious cultivation since the Roman times. During the last thousand year...

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