Not much needed for the identification of this one.
Mostly regarded as a nuisance, the dandelion is quite beneficial and possess more nutritional qualities than any store bought vegetable. There are no poisonous lookalikes and the roots are considered one of the safest of all herbal remedies.
The leaves are best harvested before the plant develops a flower as bitterness occurs in the leaves of the mature plants. Greens harvested after a frost are known to have a much sweeter flavor with no bitterness at all. Steaming, boiling or sauteing the greens with sweet vegetables like carrots help tremendously in removing the bitterness as well.
Dandelion leaves are higher in Beta Carotene than carrots and have more iron than spinach. They are also high in vitamins B-1, B-2, B-5 B-6, C, D, E, Biotin, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. The roots also contain numerous medicinal qualities and is known to strengthen the liver and promote the flow of bile with the reduction in inflammation of the bile duct. The white milky sap from the leaves is known to sooth bee stings among other irritations.
Tea made from the leaves and roots can be very beneficial to the kidneys and gall bladder by cleansing the blood and aiding the liver in the recycling of nutrients.
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