When Life Gave Me Weeds

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When the early Autumn hillside behind the house was covered with flowers, and seed heads of grass danced among them, I gathered a big armful of the bounty. Enough for two large bouquets. One bouquet remained at home, and the second one went to the clothing store where my youngest daughter was working. The crew there was cool, and I liked them. Since they worked inside all day, I thought they might enjoy a bit of our hillside meadow. One young woman looked at the wild bouquet and told me "them is weeds". Well, of course they were, but I looked her in the eye and said "I prefer to call them wildflowers." Little did I know that exchange would lead to an enduring and cherished friendship.

You have already met Karen. When life gave her dandelions, she had a bit to say about that, and I enjoyed reading her comments. It brought to mind some things related to dandelions that have been fun and interesting over the years. When the same daughter who worked with Karen was about three, she picked a hand full of the sweet golden dandelions that grew along the side of the house and brought them to me. "Mommy", she said, "I brought you some DAISY LIONS." To this day, they are daisylions to me.

As my interest in chemical free gardening grew, I began to learn about the value of 'weeds' in our yards and gardens, and even in our diet. They are amazing! As well as supporting scads of beneficial insects and pollinators, improving the soil where they grow; offering themselves to help heal the scrapes, scratches and cuts we get when working in our yards, many of these mostly unwanted plants are also known to have properties that help to support and maintain the health of our bodies. Perhaps the next time you have that murderous gleam in your eye as you head for the Plantain, or Chickweed, or our friend the Dandelion, you will pause a moment and ask yourself if they truly need to be slain.