Friday, 13 June 2014


Okay, so I am writing a debate for one of my classes at school and I decided I would use the structure of a dandelion to support my case. Anyway, I have been researching them (there is surprisingly little information on them) and I have found out just how amazingly intricate they actually are!


Okay, just looking at the flower head, we can see bright, happy yellow petals around the outside, darkening to almost orange towards the middle. Actually, the inner petals are not petals at all - they are mini flowers.


So you can see the inner "petals" split and curl at the top? Well, they are the tiny flowers. This structure gives more pollen for the bees to collect - more honey! 


The inner flowers of this ingenious design close at night, giving an incredible pattern.



You can see the individual petals on each flower here. The shape of the flower looks almost like a heart!

Okay, so now I'll move on to the seed head.


The soft fluffiness not only creates a perfect sphere, but it also creates a "parachute" for the seed as it blows around in the wind, searching for a new home to create its own masterpiece.


As the seed blows on, the parachute begins to change into a ball of its own, now providing protection for the delicate seed with so much potential all around it, cushioning its landing.


Going back a few steps, I'll now talk about the little white dimply part that the seeds hold on to.


I have always thought of it looking like a microphone (the misconceptions we can have as children) but I have found that if you look really really really carefully, you can see little holes in each dimple where each seed latches on to, receiving all the nutrients it needs to grow and form a little life.


Not yet. Closer...


There! You see the little holes? At this level, you can also see the the barb-like structure on the seeds themselves. This is to help with them being "planted", kind of like cobbler's pegs (though no where near as annoying).

The stem itself is pretty cool. It is hollow, giving it the structure of a bird's bones.


The white sappy stuff has anti-fungal properties, meaning that it can be used on warts, athlete's foot and other fungal problems.

I have always thought the jagged leaves (for which dandelions are named - dent de lion, which is French for lion's tooth) didn't suit the rest of the soft, delicate plant. However, the leaves are extremely high in vitamins (especially a) and are recommended everywhere to be used in stir fries.



Who would pass up something that looks as delicious as that?

The leaves can also be used to make tea.


Okay, so I'm nearly done. So, what's left? Well, the root of course! What is so significant about the root? Well...
The root can be used as a substitute for coffee!


Now, I haven't tried this and I don't actually know what it tastes like, but apparently it can help with heart disease and diabetes.

Well, I hope you now can appreciate dandelions as much as I do.


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