Friday, August 25, 2017

Weeds, Beautiful Weeds
Looking about this morning, I noticed the vibrant golden hue of the golden rod bloom nodding gently on its leafy verdant stalk. The contrasts of colors made me stop and think of the various plants that we call weeds. Many of the plants that we buy and propagate were once weeds somewhere else in the world. One of my wife Cindy’s favorite was a yellow thistle-like bloom that is a weed in the country of Turkey. She picked it up quite by accident, but because of her Scottish lineage, it quickly became a plant that she loved. Her all time favorite was the daisy. It grows wild, here in the state of Pennsylvania. Its white petals hold hands to encircle a bright yellow center.
I am often amazed at the shades and variety of colors. A brilliant orange bloom, very much in the same shape of the golden rod is a plant, my father-in-law Bud, called a butterfly plant. It often blooms in fields along the highways. I don’t know what the weed is called, but its tall stalk is capped with an intense purple crown. Sometimes it grows alongside of the golden rod and the contrast is almost breathtaking.
The periwinkle colored flower buttons of the chicory scatter along the stems of pale green. It is a plant that our forefathers collected and roasted its roots to brew as a substitute for coffee. The white frilly Queen Anne’s lace is so dainty in its appearance and yet has an edible root and is called the wild carrot.
The dandelion has a fuzzy bright yellow flower that is very prolific and the bane of the homeowner’s yard. Its leaves are edible as wilted green gravy. The rue of fried bacon, onion, and vinegar welcomes the bitter green leaves. Served over mashed potatoes is a childhood memory for me. The yellow blossoms can be collected, cooked, and make into a pale golden jelly that tastes so very much like the honey created by honey bees.
Take time to looks around. Even weeds are useful and beautiful.

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