The Many Uses for Dandelion
Dandelions…they are everywhere this time of year. Not long ago, Dennis would be pulling his hair out trying to rid his pristine lawn of those rascally weeds.
Then we bought a farm…and got goats…and started dabbling in making our own soaps, creams and salves.
And we found out those pesky weeds are actually beneficial.
Goats love ‘em. Last year when our Jack and Stella were still little squirts running around like crazy goats they would stop and munch a dandelion flower…then another…then another. Before we knew it, they had munched a whole bunch of them and then promptly fell asleep in the sun, full and perhaps a little “drunk” on dandelions.
Besides the farm critters, dandelions are also a favorite of bees.
They can also be eaten by people in salads or made into teas.
They can be infused in carrier oils and used in a variety of soaps, lip balms and hand creams. You can even make wine with them.
Dandelion is said to help with upset stomachs and constipation when eaten and to help aches and pains when used topically. In fact, do a Google search and you will find all sorts of uses for dandelions.
To make your own dandelion infused oil, pick a bunch of dandelion flowers and dry for a couple days by laying them out in an even layer on some clean towels or uncoated paper plates. After a couple of days, fill a mason jar about half full with the flowers and fill the rest of the jar with your choice of oil…extra virgin olive oil, sunflower oil, almond oil, whatever floats your boat. Cover tightly.
Set your jar in a cool, dry place. Give it a shake every other day or so. Once the oil has been infused, strain out the flowers and retain the oil.
You can use your oil to make a lotion bar, hand cream, udder balm, bar soap…anywhere you would use the carrier oil. If you used olive oil, you can even use it to make salad dressings.
Please note: If you’ve never used dandelions before, then you should try just a little first. Dandelion is a weed and people who have allergies to other types of weeds may have an allergic reaction to dandelions, so check with your physician first.
So the next time you are about to use some cancer causing chemical to get rid of those pesky weeds….think about this…the benefits of dandelions is their potential to help cure cancer. Hmmm.
Check out this recipe for making a dandelion salve:
In a double boiler, mix ¼ cup dandelion infused oil, ¼ cup coconut oil, 3 tbs beeswax. Heat until the coconut oil and beeswax melt. Remove from heat and let it cool slightly. You can use your own blend of essential oils or keep it plain. I used a citrus blend in mine to give it a sunny fragrance.
Pour the oils into a small jar with lid, cover and let cool completely.
You can use your salve all summer to rub on those achy muscles and joints.
What do you do with your dandelions?
- ¼ Cup Dandelion Infused Oil
- ¼ Cup Coconut Oil
- 3 Tbs Bees wax
- In a double boiler heat the oils and beeswax until fully melted.
- Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
- Add about 20 drops of your favorite essential oil.
- Pour into a 4oz jar with lid and cool completely.
My Mom and Dad made Dandelion wine. Very sweet, more of a dessert wine with a big punch!!! I still have the recipe 🙂
Cindy, my husband and I were in Newfoundland a few months back and saw yards full of dandelions. Like you say, they’ve always been regarded as nuisance weeds. I’m always digging them out of our lawn. So, I was surprised to see them flourishing on the lawns in our most easterly province. Great article.