I think most of us are very happy to see spring arrive once again. The rebirth and activity of everything around us is invigorating. Opening the windows and allowing the spring freshness to fill our homes, and our hearts is a wonderful feeling.
It’s amazing how being outdoors can greatly help our minds and bodies. Whether we go out in the country, to a local park, or just out in our yard, being outdoors can improve your mood, lower your blood pressure and reduce stress. It has also been found that people recovering from illness or surgery who spent time outdoors required fewer painkillers, had fewer complications and experienced shorter hospital stays.
One of the first flowers we see in the spring is the dandelion. Yes, many consider it a weed and many people work hard trying to keep it out of their beautiful lawns but the dandelion has been used for thousands of years, across the globe, as a medicine. Dandelion flowers, leaves, and roots have been an important food and medicine source for humans for centuries. They are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants as well as being good for the liver, digestion, and skin issues. You can make dandelion salve for muscle and joint pain, dandelion root bitters for digestion, or dandelion pesto for vitamins and minerals and it is one of the first and most important sources of pollen and nectar for bees.
On March 28th we celebrate National Weed Appreciation Day! It’s a day we can take as an opportunity to learn more about the good things weeds do for us. Go out into your garden, take out your phone, search for the weeds growing there and read up on them. After all, a weed is just a plant in the wrong place.