Blog Roll, Musings of a Photographer

The Simple Beauty of the Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

I’ve photographed the dandelion for a number of years now every mid to late spring. Where I walk there are literally thousands upon thousands clustered in tight numbers. I love the simplicity and delicate nature of the seed carrier. One blow … making a child-like wish and they are gone on the wind.

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Dandelions are thought to have evolved around 30 million years ago in Eurasia and have been used as a herb, medicine and a food for thousands of years.

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The deep yellow petals before lawns where popular gardeners weeded out the grass to make way for the dandelions. Humans of the 20th century decided that the dandelion was a weed.

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The yellow blossom matures into a fluffy delicate puff ball of seeds. The seeds are carried on the wind like tiny parachutes and can travel great distances.

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Each seed is attached to a bundle of approximately 100 feathery bristles, these are called pappus. Most seeds more than likely land within two metres of the parent flower, however if the weather is windy and dry it’s possible that some will travel a kilometer or more.

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