Bryant RedHawk wrote:Our chooks love them, so we encourage our dandelions to proliferate.
Tj Jefferson wrote:I don't just leave them, I spread them. We have hardpan clay, and I have tried many different tillers, but the dandelions (and their relative chicory) are AWESOME. In the yard I use them as mineral recyclers, they clearly bring up minerals from strata deeper than grass (my bluegrass will get down, but it takes a long time) and I also appreciate the early flowers for our mason bees. Generally I look at the "weeds" and try to figure out why they are preferred in that niche? If I can answer that, I can choose to let them maintain the niche or replace them with a similar niche plant (as I am doing with chicory replacing the dandelions in more fertile areas, simply by allowing higher growth the dandelions can't attain). I don't eat them, but lots of other stuff does, so I like them! Eventually they promote clover and grasses, which get thick. They seem to be a critical part of the procession from bare soil to grass, and eventually to frontier forest.