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Dandelion

Taraxacum officinale

A yellow dandelion flower

A common sight in spring, these bright yellow wild flowers can look quite exotic and the fluffy seed heads that follow are delicate and ethereal.

Bright yellow discs of tightly packed florets above a rosette of jaggedly toothed leaves are followed by fluffy white seed heads. The plants are perennial and have a long tap root.

Where to find Dandelions.

Dandelions mostly occur in disturbed habitats such as pastures, roadside verges, lawns, tracks, paths and waste ground.

How’s it doing?

Dandelions are widespread and stable throughout the British Isles.

A dandelion clock seed head

Did you know?

  • The name is derived from the French ‘dent de lion’ as the jaggedly toothed leaves were thought to resemble the teeth in a lion’s jaw.
  • In the Language of Flowers, Dandelion stands for faithfulness and happiness.
  • Dandelion is said to be one of the five bitter herbs that Jews were required to eat during the Feast of Passover.
  • A favourite food of pet rabbits and guinea pigs, Dandelion leaves may also be added to salads to add an extra, slightly bitter flavour.
  • During the Second World War, when coffee was almost unobtainable, a substitute was made from the roasted and ground roots of Dandelions.

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