Dandelion - Taraxacum officinale
Family - Asteraceae
A well known Perennial which embraces a large number of micro species, with lobed spoon shaped leaves forming a basal rosette. Single yellow flowers heads of strap shaped florets 30-60mm (1.2-2.4in) across are borne on hollow stems to 35cm (14in) high, which if broken exude a white milky sap. Flowers appear March to October, ripening to form the familiar white fluffy spherical 'clock', with seeds easily dispersed by the wind. Common in meadows, pastures, lawns, roadsides and as a field weed throughout Europe and West Asia. One of the flowers in Linnaeus' flower clock or Horologium Florae, Dandelion occupies the 5 a.m. opening time.
FBCP do not advise or recommend that Dandelion - Taraxacum officinale is eaten or used as a herbal remedy. Young leaves are apparently edible as a salad crop or cooked as a vegetable, the flowers can be used in wine making. Used in the past to treat the liver, gall-bladder, eczema and acne. Sap from the roots were use to treat warts, corns and verrucas.
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