Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Commentary

May 10, 2013

The annual dandelion whine

It happens every year at this time; I make a little dandelion whine. So here goes.

It occurred to me while doing yard work yesterday that I am partially to blame for my ongoing battle with the evil yellow menace, also known as dandelion season. I remember as a child I would pick what I thought were pretty yellow flowers and present a lovely bouquet of them to my mother. Later when they turned to fluffy white puffs, I would blow on them and make it “snow.” Essentially, I was spreading the seeds. If only I had picked more bouquets and made less snow, I may not be in my current predicament; knee-deep in the cursed things.

I wish I could go back to visit my 6-year-old self and explain things to her. I would tell her to stop spreading the seeds because she will regret it in her later years. But if I know her, and I think I do, she would probably just kick me and run away. So I guess I will just continue to handle things by spreading weed killer, digging, cursing and possibly setting my yard on fire. That’ll show ‘em.

It’s interesting to note that dandelions are not native to North America. (It’s not really, but I say it is interesting to convince you that the boring history lesson I am about to lay on you just because I need filler for my column is not totally pointless).

Dandelions originated in Asia and quickly spread into Europe because of a bunch of darn kids blowing on the puff balls and spreading the seeds. Dandelions are so prolific; the spread only took a couple of hours.

As we all know, the Europeans are a wacky, fun-loving bunch. When the French moved to Canada, they brought dandelions with them as kind of a gag gift for the natives. The Spanish did the same in Mexico and they all had a good laugh. Then the Germans — we all know how madcap those Germans are — thought it would be funny to bring dandelions to America. Quite frankly, the joke was a little old and no longer funny by then.

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