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Are Dandelions Flowers or Weeds? [Your Queries Answered!]

You might have blown off the Dandelions flowers while making wishes but never thought the puffs were actually seeds that can turn into weeds.

Generally, Dandelions are flowers famous for their yellow head blooms. But, later, when pollination occurs, these rays of florets turn into seed puffs that take over a garden when dispersed via wind, making it a weed.

Meanwhile, Dandelions have other classifications you may or may not know. So go through the article to know more.

What Is A Dandelion Classified As?

Often consumed as a highly nutritious plant, Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is classified as a stemless hardy perennial herb of the Asteraceae family.

The Dandelion, also famous as a puffball, Irish daisy, or cankerwort, has a daisy-like yellow flower head, making it a flowering plant.

Meanwhile, Dandelions lack woody stems and are small (1 foot) with rosette leaves that people used in ancient times as a medicinal plant.

Recently Dandelions roots have received recognition as an appetite stimulator and cure for liver and gallbladder problems. Thus, making them a herbal plant. But further research is ongoing.
The yellow flowers of Dandelions
The flowers of Dandelion are composite, and the leaves are spiky with toothed edges.

Moreover, people use Dandelion leaves, roots, and flowers in salads, sandwiches, and baked dishes for their health benefits. For this, many consider Dandelion as a vegetable.

Nevertheless, the exact classification of Dandelion is impossible given its variety of uses, benefits, and morphological character.

Are Dandelions Flowers Or Weeds?

The differentiation of Dandelions as flowers or weeds depends upon the perception and growth location.

According to botanical terms, Dandelions are flowers with daisy-like yellow flower heads and more than 100 rays of petals.

Each flowers are compound inflorescence that turns into silver-puffed fruits. So this is a reproductive phenomenon of a flowering plant.

However, the puffs later on form seeds and disperse by the wind. These seeds grow anywhere in moist and damp conditions and turn into a weed.
The white seed head of Dandelion that is about to blow away
The seed heads are white and contain seeds with fine hairs, which help them disperse via wind.

Moreover, people call Dandelions weeds because of their dense leaf mats that take over ornamental gardens and hinder the growth of native plants.

Thus, Dandelions are flowers if they grow in their respective ground without hampering other plants and give off yellow flower heads.

But Dandelions are weeds, similar to their identical twins if they grow in lawns, gardens, and meadows where they are not supposed to be a part.

Does Mowing Dandelions Spread Them?

If you have adopted appropriate lawn maintenance practices and set the mower to the desired height, it can control the Dandelions population.

However, avoid mowing the Dandelion when they have flowered and formed puffballs.

Mowing Dandelions after seed formation spread them. It is because the seed attaches to the lawnmower base or gets carried by mower blades and germinates in favorable conditions.

So better to mow the Dandelion when they are still developing and have not entered the seed formation stage. It ensures zero risk of spreading.

On the other hand, Dandelion’s best or, say, worst trait is its strong, deep-rooted tap root that returns every year, even if you trim off its foliage.

These roots are sturdy and can penetrate any hard soil. It is a good point for nearby plants as it makes calcium available and improves soil quality.

However, it might not be a good trait for gardeners trying to eliminate Dandelion. And mowing will just support the spread indirectly.

So those trying to control the Dandelion spread should pull the roots out instead of mowing.

From Editorial Team

Health And Garden Tips!

Consumption of Dandelions is safe and nutritious. However, it should be from a safe environment free of chemical applications.

Meanwhile, Dandelions are bad for your yard if they turn into a noxious weed and start choking the lawn grass. But good for your health, given their low-calorie and loaded nutrients.