The dandelion, scientific name Taraxacum officinale and commonly called also bitter chicory or meacamas, is a plant that, despite being considered in many cases an adventitious herb, has numerous medicinal properties, highlighting its powerful diuretic power to eliminate toxins and retention of liquids.
Join us in this Green Ecology article if you want to learn how the dandelion plant is and what it is for in the field of natural medicine.
How is the dandelion plant?
This plant is a species of the asteraceous or compound family. It is a perennial plant of an approximate height of 40 cm, with flowers of a characteristic yellow for which it is easy to identify. Another of its most defining characteristics are its cipselas, which in many places it is customary to blow to scatter them to the wind.
The origin of the dandelion as European is valued, although it is currently spread throughout much of the world. It is a very common plant to be found in the wild in fields, meadows and roads, which, as noted above, is sometimes considered a “weed”.
What is the use of dandelion?
The dandelion has a lot of nutrients that contribute to the body: vitamins B and C, potassium, carbohydrates, beta carotene, flavonoids, oleic and linoleic acids and tannins. Thanks to its nutritional composition, the properties and benefits of dandelion are several:
It treats of a plant of properties purifying mainly and diuréticas and aliada, therefore, of the liver and of the kidney. Its diuretic effects help prevent the formation of kidney stones.
In addition, its root has healthy sugars that are easily digested , so it is sometimes used for people with diabetes.
The plant also has mild laxative effects. So, it can be used as a remedy against constipation.
Its depurative properties also make it indicated to help people who are recovering from chemical or food poisoning. It is beneficial for the fight against cholesterol.
Infusions of this plant, once cold, can also be used to wash wounds or treat skin conditions , and thanks to its high level of tannins, it helps with peripheral circulatory problems, such as varicose veins and hemorrhoids.
How to grow dandelion?
Since it is a resistant plant, planting your own dandelions at home should not be a big problem if you follow our instructions to grow dandelion at home:
The first thing to consider when planting dandelion is the climate of the area. This plant prefers temperate climates, and director semi-shade sun conditions. In addition, it is resistant to frost and wind.
Regarding the soil, it is a plant that does not require pots or substrate and actually grows much better directly on the ground. In addition, this plant is very undemanding with them, and any moist soil rich in organic matter will be sufficient, although with good drainage.
To reproduce the plant for its seeds, it is preferable to plant at the end of spring. The idea is to prepare a seedbed for the seeds, which we will humidify and enrich with compost before planting them.
Leave the seedbed in the sun and keep it moist, and in about three weeks the seedlings should have already developed their second leaf, at which point they are ready to be transplanted to their final location.
The dandelion does not need too much watering, being enough to do it twice a week in the hot seasons, and much less in the cold ones, although in the first days after sowing or transplanting you will have to water more often.
It is also possible to reproduce the plant by division of roots. If you do, transplant a piece of plant that comes from a plant with at least 2 years of age, from the point of the rhizome. The best time to carry out this type of propagation is in autumn or at the end of winter, and you can divide a single plant into as many new ones as rhizomes have produced. By doing so, you can transplant directly to the ground, not being necessary the previous step of the nursery or provisional pot.
Outdoors, it is recommended to form dandelions in rows or rows, keeping a distance of about 10 cm between each plant.