• Jenny Lynn Keller

A Dandy of a Plant


Dandelions—weed or herb? Yard perfectionists spray them with weed killer, and nature lovers add them to their dinner plate. So which is it? My herb book hails it as the pig of the plant world because almost everything is edible. Herbal coffee from the roots, wine from the flowers, and vitamin-rich salad from the leaves. Huh, then how come every garden center in the country stocks enough products to eradicate the plant for a gazillion years? Could it be the dandelion’s tendency to grow everywhere in the universe and multiply faster than the speed of light? You know, like sprout overnight in the middle of a concrete driveway and have the audacity to bloom proudly the next morning. Seen it and sprayed it, people.


No doubt most gardeners have an less than glowing opinion of the hardy plant, but only one opinion matters when it comes to each of us. Psalm 139 says we are an open book to God, and he knows the smallest of details. Like “what I’m going to say long before I say it . . . when I take a seat and when I stand up again. Even when I am far away, You know what I’m thinking. You observe my wanderings and my sleeping, my waking and my dreaming, and You know everything I do in more detail than even I know.” And, despite all that knowledge, what’s his response? “You have surrounded me on every side, behind me and before me, and You have placed Your hand gently on my shoulder.” Whether you call it grace or mercy, I picture a hand so large and strong nothing can pluck us out and cast us aside like a weed tossed in the trash.


On this sunny Southern-fried Friday before Memorial Day, what’s your stance on dandelions? Weed or herb?

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